It’s no secret that a computer’s processor is a key component. After all, this is the brain of the entire system, performing many operations, even when it seems to be asleep. And the main enemy of any computer hardware is temperature. The more and more intensively the device works, the more heat it generates. Because of it, the processor can even significantly reduce its performance. But what should be the processor temperature, how to monitor and limit it?
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Why is the processor heating up?
As we have already said, the number of tasks assigned to the processor and their labor intensity directly affects the heating of this block. And you can see the load level of the main computing module of the computer in “Task Manager”… To call it, you need to press the key combination Ctrl + Shift + Esc in Windows. In the very first line of the tab “Processes” (“Performance” for older versions of Windows) will show the total processor load, and the subsequent lines indicate which application is consuming how many resources.
On the chart (tab “Performance”) displays the history of the processor load for the last minute. If the temperature rise of the processor is associated with a load on it, then this is normal.
The same type of load can load the processor in different ways. The top multi-core representatives of the Core and Ryzen families can be loaded with a mere percentage of the tasks that will take 30-50% of the resources from Celeron. And background tasks that the processor deals with while idle can seriously load the system.
In addition, the reasons for processor overheating can be: installation of malware, incorrect operation of temperature sensors, insufficient fan speed due to dust accumulation, as well as dried thermal paste.
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How to detect CPU overheating?
An increase in fan speed and the resulting noise, as well as an increase in power consumption by the device, may indicate overheating of the processor. And the BIOS (UEFI) or system utilities can provide accurate information about the temperature of the processor.
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Programs for checking the temperature of the processor in Windows
Core Temp is a simple and Russian-speaking program, which is important for many. It displays basic information about the processor, including its temperature. Core Temp works with all current versions of Windows, including Windows 7/10.
The program allows you to find out the temperature of each processor core and displays this information in the Windows taskbar. If Core Temp is at system startup, then the necessary information will always be present in the taskbar. The program can also be used as a data provider for the All CPU Meter desktop widget. But Core Temp also has its own widget designed for Windows 7 – Core Temp Gadget. Another interesting addition to this program is Core Temp Grapher, which plots CPU load and temperature. Both plugins can be found on the add-ons page of the official Core Temp website.
CPUID HWMonitor is a free application that is considered one of the most popular for viewing the status of the hardware components of a computer or laptop. HWMonitor shows the temperature of both the processor as a whole and all its cores separately. Moreover, depending on the model of the motherboard, you can also find out the temperature of the socket. The Min and Max columns show the average values, while the Value column shows the current temperature.
HWMonitor can also show useful information such as:
- Temperature of the graphics card, hard drives and motherboard.
- Rotation speed of various fans.
- Information about the voltage on the components and the load on the processor cores.
Download HWMonitor (Free)
This simple program is perfect for beginners. The Russian-language application provides information about the main computer devices and their characteristics. In addition to a lot of interesting and useful information in the Speccy, you can see important readings of the thermal sensors of your computer or laptop. The CPU section will show the current processor temperature. In other sections, you can find out the temperature of the video card, motherboard, SSD and HDD drives, if they have appropriate sensors.
Download Speccy (free for non-commercial use)
Typically, this program is used to monitor the fan speed of the cooling system of a laptop or computer. But at the same time, the utility can also provide information about the temperature of the main components of the system, from the processor and its cores to the video card and hard drives.
The program is constantly updated, reading data from all current motherboards. It works correctly in both Windows 7 and Windows 8 / 8.1 / 10. But on older systems, SpeedFan can lead to problems when trying to adjust the fan speed. There are several additional features in the program. For example, she knows how to build graphs of temperature changes. This can be useful to see to what extent the processor heats up when performing resource-intensive tasks.
Download SpeedFan (Free)
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Normal CPU operating temperature – how many degrees?
Novice users are often interested in this question, and it is relevant both for laptops and computers, both for solutions based on Intel and AMD.
There is no universal answer to this answer. Even two processors with the same index under the same conditions can have different operating temperatures. The difference will be small, but still noticeable. The description of processors always contains the phrase “maximum operating temperature”. This does not mean at all that work at rates below critical will be normal. A temperature of 100 degrees can be considered fatal for most processors. But in fact, the system will begin to protect its “brain” and at lower rates, including throttling.
This name is used to protect the processor from overheating. As the temperature rises, work cycles will be skipped. With a decrease in the load, the heating of the module will also decrease – it will return to the previous mode. In general, the recommended operating temperature is 70-80% of the maximum. High temperatures will shorten the life of the processor. And to operate in the optimal temperature range, you need an efficient cooling system. It is believed that at low load the processor should not heat up above 35-50 degrees.
Current solutions from Intel (this includes most models released over the past 10 years) operate in the following temperature ranges:
- 28 – 41 degrees idle. It assumes that the Windows desktop is running, but no system maintenance is performed in the background.
- 40 – 62 degrees (50 – 70 degrees for overclocked models) in load mode. This includes demanding games, video rendering, archiving tasks, working with virtual machines, etc.
- 67 – 72 is the maximum operating temperature as recommended by Intel.
For AMD processors, the temperature standards are about the same, except that for some representatives of the FX series, the maximum recommended temperature is only 61 degrees Celsius. Do not be alarmed if in load mode your indicators turn out to be slightly higher than the recommended ones. This may be the case if the computer or laptop has been working for a long time.
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What to do if the processor overheats?
If you think the processor temperature is too high, then you can try to reduce it in several ways:
1. Free utility SpeedFan will help speed up the rotation of the fan blades on the processor. This will draw away excess heat and lower the temperature.
2. Open the cover of the system unit. But this solution is temporary, and the components will be exposed to dust.
3. With the lid open, you can try to remove the hot air with a vacuum cleaner or fan.
4. Replace the thermal grease on the processor.
5. If there is a passive cooling system, it is worth replacing it with an active one. Water cooling will show the greatest efficiency.
6. Install additional case fans. The temperature inside the case also affects the temperature of the processor. The faster the cold air gets inside the system unit, the better.
7. Adjust the RPM of the processor cooler depending on the load. But it is not worth setting 100% of the revolutions on a permanent basis. If the cooler fails, you can replace it with a more powerful one.
8. If you constantly work with programs that heavily load the processor, try replacing it with a more productive one.