How to Test Your PC for Failing Hardware Tips and Tools to Know

Software testing is as important as hardware testing. Willie Muñoz shows you how.

How to Test Your PC for Failing Hardware Tips and Tools to Know

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Now that we’re entering October, it’s time to not only check the temperature and humidity in your office, but to check for those things too. While testing equipment like your computer, headphones, cell phones and more, you should test to make sure your equipment is working properly!

Read on for this month’s list of useful tools and tips that are worth having on your desktop or laptop.

Is the battery life behind you?

Screenshot by Willie Geist/CNET

Battery usage on a PC can be very tricky. Not all machines calculate battery life by turning off Bluetooth and WiFi when you’re not using them, as some operating systems do. Some users report positive results when they change settings to block Bluetooth and WiFi on their notebooks. If you’re in this camp, here are a few tips to improve battery life.

Plug in your phone to your desk and plug in your phone’s headphone port. This allows you to get an idea for volume and the amount of data each puts into the phone’s battery. You can now switch between Bluetooth and WiFi, depending on how you want to use the phone. If you want to start using the battery without WiFi or Bluetooth, simply shut it down and plug it back in before you use it again.

Radiator airflow

Is your air conditioning unit blowing hot air over your desk? If you don’t have a laptop accessory that can be propped up with a large bracket to make a small loop for your heat exchanger, there are a few ways to quickly reduce the amount of warm air flooding your office. Make sure your automatic fan goes off when your AC is off, and setup the wair enclosure for the cooler air you want to send out from your desk to the rest of your workspace.

Mats on your monitor and keyboard

Screenshot by Willie Geist/CNET

It happens to the best of us. While trying to kill away the last bits of data on your hard drive and hope for the best, you hit one more file and suddenly your PC goes dark. Even if the problem appears minor, it’s important to remedy as soon as possible, because if the hard drive fails, it can wipe everything from your hard drive, wiping out your computer and data forever.

Windows Device Manager

Microsoft has a folder on your PC called Device Manager that can do a lot for you. Look for the disk hygiene folders, called System Preferences, Windows hard drive health and diagnostics, and that weird one that looks like the abbreviation for the type of scanner you bought. Right-click on any one of these folders and you’ll be able to see the details of what drive is used and what state it’s in, along with the health of each drive. You can even change the health status to determine if it’s at the end of its life.

Windows 10 All-in-One Configuration Tool (Beta)

Screenshot by Willie Geist/CNET

When you’re not enough help from the folks in Redmond, GA, you can do this to help your computer diagnose itself. You’ll need the Windows 10 All-in-One Configuration Tool (Beta) beta to use this program. After you set up your PC using Task Manager and enter and exact way that you’ll type in, say, the serial number of your hard drive, the All-in-One Configuration Tool will remember that information and log you into your profile. This will let it check your PC as it goes, which could be a lot of info to pull in at once. It will also show you all of the things it can do, such as tell you if your hard drive is unbootable, a ping that might indicate that the hard drive is dying, and so on.

One of these should work for you, if any other spring us to mind.

Method 1

First, set your PC to run its startup process. Let it run and ignore your weird computer that can’t load. Next, open Device Manager and open the hard drive profile. The hard drive should come up on the left-hand side of the picture, so let the system handle that first.

Method 2

Now, click on the drive profile you wish to check and let the system determine which drive you should delete. If your hard drive is installed on both a hard drive and as an SSD, you may want to delete the hybrid drive. Additionally, after you delete the drive, give it a further run to see if you have any more missing files. If there are files on the drive, you may want to delete them first instead of your hard drive.

These are important steps to have taken to keep your computer

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