5 Useful Commands For Finding Information About Your Computer

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Having issues with your computer or just want to find out some information about your system? Our senior technical engineer, Max Doyle-Linden shares his five top commands for finding your way around a desktop.

1- Find the original install date of Windows

Finding the original install date of Windows can be useful when you need to evaluate the suitability of a system for future use; whether you plan to reinstall Windows or replace the computer entirely, the original installation date is a good place to start. To find the original installation date from within Windows itself: –

a. Run command prompt as administrator (right click > Run as Administrator)

b. Type ‘systeminfo’ and hit enter to retrieve various information about your computer, amongst the information provided is ‘Original Install Date’ – this is the date Windows was installed on the computer or for Windows 10 systems, the last time a feature upgrade was installed

In addition to the original install date, you can use this command to find the computers’ last boot time

command-prompt

2 – Find the serial number of your computer

If you need driver updates for your computer or need to speak to the manufacturer about an issue, the devices’ serial number is nearly always a necessary piece of information to find exactly what you need. Finding this information remotely can often be a challenge as the serial number is typically printed on a sticker attached to the device. However, it can be found from within Windows itself, to do so: –

a. Run command prompt as administrator (right click > Run as Administrator)

b. Type ‘wmic bios get serialnumber’ and hit enter to retrieve the devices’ serial number

admin-command-prompt

3 – Retrieve the SMART status of your connected storage devices

If you’re experiencing poor computer performance or suspect your computers’ hard drive may be faulty, you can swiftly check the SMART status of any storage devices attached to your computer. To do so: –

a. Run command prompt as administrator (right click > Run as Administrator)

b. Type ‘wmic diskdrive get status’ and hit enter to retrieve the SMART status of any connected storage devices

windows-command-prompt

4 – Find when the computer was last turned on (alternative method)

In addition to using the ‘systeminfo’ command to find when a computer last turned on, you can use the ‘net stats’ command to retrieve this information. The command differs between Windows versions, so be sure to use the correct command for your version of Windows.

a. Run command prompt as administrator (right click > Run as Administrator)

b. Type ‘net stats workstation’ or ‘net stats srv’ (for desktop and server versions of Windows respectively) and hit enter to retrieve the devices’ last boot time

windows-admin-command-prompt

5 – Find your computers’ IP address and other useful network information

If you’re experiencing network problems with your computer, you may need to locate your computers’ current network configuration; usually it’s IP address and gateway – this information can be surprisingly difficult to find without some knowledge of the Windows command prompt. To find this information yourself:-

a. Run command prompt as administrator (right click > Run as Administrator)

b. Type ‘ipconfig’ to show networking information about your computer, including its IP address and default gateway

ip-config-prompt

If you would like more information about the IT services we offer, please feel free to drop us a call on (0)20 3097 0220 or email [email protected]

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