Is your PC getting toasty or is your motherboard melting? Okay, I’m exaggerating, but if your components are reaching a potentially damaging temperature, I recommend that you use SpeedFan. This program monitors and reports the temperatures inside your PC using the built-in sensors on the processor and motherboard.
SpeedFan is a program that monitors voltages, fan speeds and temperatures in computers with hardware monitor chips. It can even access S.M.A.R.T. info for those hard disks that support this feature and show hard disk temperatures too and can even change the FSB on some hardware. At the lowest level, it is a hardware monitor software that can access temperature sensors, but its main feature is that it can control fan speeds according to the temperatures inside your computer.
This is what you see when you run SpeedFan without applying any settings, minus the info messages that you see on first run. To configure the setting click Configure button.
You’ll see various temperatures and their sub-menus, which are Temp01 and Temp02. If you tick a temperature, it shows up on SpeedFan. If you tick the Speed in the sub menu, it means that if temperature is too high it will affect the speed.
You can choose one or more or nil temperature to be affecting a certain speed. When you click on a temperature, you can set the desired and warning temperatures. Plus whether it shows up in the system tray. Your fan speeds will be at the minimum value if all related temperatures are below desired, will ramp up to the maximum value when between desired and warning, and go to 100% at warning temperature. Take note of how this works, and choose your temperatures wisely.
Next tab is Speeds, if you click on a speed, you see the minimum and maximum values they will be at. Plus whether to make it automatically varied. The use of minimum and maximum values has just been explained earlier.
Since we’re making it start on startup, it would be nice to start SpeedFan minimized so that it does not pop up and bug you. It is also nice to minimize on close since it’s human nature to click close and for the case of SpeedFan, it really will close if the minimize on close option isn’t checked.
This Advanced tab is interesting, as advanced settings usually are. You can select the monitoring chip and change it’s settings. For the mainboard H/M (hardware monitoring) block, you can even choose which sensor to use for the different Remote readings.
Here is some explanation on the terms/logos:
- Flame on the temperature means too hot (above warning), and all fans will be set to 100%.
- Red on the temperature means getting hot or a temperature increase. Affected fans will be set to maximum value.
- A green tick means temperatures are ok and stablized. Fan speeds will be minimum if this temperature is around or below desired temperature.
- A blue tick means temperatures are way below desired or decreasing. No problem here. Fan speeds will be at minimum.
- Core usually means the reading from the sensor inside the CPU, which will give the same reading as CoreTemp or other such programs that read this temperature
Remote1 usually means mainboard CPU temperature sensor, while Remote2 is northbridge/ambient temperature, although sometimes their roles shuffle around. I even had a Remote3 as CPU before. To know which is the CPU, just do a Prime95 and see which rises.
- HD0 = first HDD, HD1 = 2nd HDD etc.
- Speed01 and Speed02 – while this depends on your mainboard and where you plugged the fans to, so far my experience is that Speed02 is usually the CPU fan while Speed01 is the system/power fan or no effect.
This is a must-download for serious overclockers. While SpeedFan touts itself as a monitor for your system’s temperature and fan speed, the real reason it’s worthwhile is that it lets you easily overclock your PC and then adjust the fan speed so it doesn’t overheat.