How to Find Your Installed GPU

The Geforce GTX 1080
The Geforce GTX 1080

So maybe you’re thinking of upgrading the hardware in your current system, but you don’t know if what you’re buying is better than what you have. Depending on which operating system you use, there’s a fairly simple way of finding out exactly what’s inside your computer.

We’ve put together a simple guide for each of the three main operating systems to help you find out which Graphics card you currently have. Let’s face it, you don’t want to have to open the entire machine up just to see what GPU you have. So turn on your machine and follow these steps and we’ll show you the details

Windows

Compared to some of the other operating systems on our list Windows has a relatively easy way to find the information on your GPU. Let’s take it slow and start you guys off with something a little more simpler than finding those details on a Linux.

Using Microsoft’s DirectX diagnostic tool, you can type in a simple command and your PC will show you all you need to know about your computer’s hardware.

Open the start menu and search for: Run You can also do this by typing `Run’ in Cortana if you’re using Windows 10.

Option 1

Once run has opened, type in the following: dxdiag and hit enter.

A new window should now open. Select the Display tab within this window.

You should now see all the information you need on your current GPU.

Option 2

You can also view the make and model, along with a few other details by looking in the device manager.

Open the start menu again (or Cortana if you have it) and type in Device Manager.

When the device manager opens, look for the drop down labeled Display Drivers, Select it and you should see the name and some other details relating to your GPU.

Pretty simple, right? Now you have all the information to start looking at that GTX 1080 you’ve always wanted.

Mac

With the Mac operating system, finding out what GPU you have can vary from model to model. For the purpose of this article, we are going to concentrate on Macs from 2012 onwards using OS X Mountain Lion.

If you don’t have this system, then follow this link and the kind people over at apple have the full list of all the operating systems and how to find your GPU details: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202053

So let’s look at how we find out these details on our Mac.

Select the Apple symbol in the top left of the desktop.

Now select About this Mac. A new window will open and this will show you a few details regarding your system.

Stay on the Overview tab and select System Report from the bottom of the window.

Now select the Hardware drop-down from the left-hand panel of the System Report window that we just opened.

Look for Graphics/Displays, which is about halfway down the list.

On the right-hand side, you should now see all the information you need about your GPU. The information also displays the graphics cards specification in good detail for you tech heads out there.

Linux

The Linux operating system is growing in popularity and with more and more users, comes more and more questions. Linux and Linux gaming platforms, like Steam, is bringing this operating system into the limelight.

The chances are that if you use this operating system for gaming, you’re going to pay attention to its graphics card. Now before you splash out a few hundred dollars or so, let me explain the multiple ways you can tell what’s already in your system.

Option 1

This first method involves using the lspci command-line tool to identify the PCI devices within the system.

Firstly we need to update the device list so we are the system returns the correct information. Type in the following command:

$ sudo update-pciids

Then we use this command to show the model names of the card:

$ lspci | grep -E "VGA|3D"

You should now see some details on the card. Notice the number at the start of the listed information. This will be something like 00:02.0 for example. Take note of that number, as we will need it in a minute.

Okay, so now we have identified your card, we can get more detailed information about it. For that, we need to use another command.

$ sudo lspci -v -s 00:02.0

The 00:02.0 number above may need to be something different on your machine. This number needs to be the one we mentioned to take note of. So make sure you use that number.

You should now see a list of details, including the bit-rate and the size of the card, amongst other things.

Option 2

Now we have one of the harder ways to find your GPU, this next way is much simpler. By using the lshw command you should see details on your current GPU. Simply in the following command:

$ sudo lshw -c video

Option 3

When using either Ubuntu or another Linux distro, you can navigate to the hardware GUI tool. This a simple method by following these steps:

System > Preferences > Hardware information

Just use the drop downs and find the information you’re looking for.

As you can see each operating system displays information in vastly different ways. Linux is by far the hardest, but I’m betting most of you out there reading this won’t be using this operating system. Now you have the information you need it’s time to start saving and start upgrading your rig.

Constantly threatening to write a book, but always with a story to tell. Tom has a typical northern English soul. He may sound as mundane as Jon Snow, but at least he tries to articulate. Lover of video games, comics, geek pop culture and wishing he could play Dungeons & Dragons.
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