Knowing what hardware is installed on your PC relatively easier to do from within Windows rather than by removing your chassis’ side panel for manual inspection. The System Information tool that comes packaged with Windows tells you all the details about your computer’s different components such as CPU, motherboard, GPU, hard drive, RAM, keyboard, mouse, display device and more. That said, there are also various third-party tools specifically developed for the same purpose that present more detailed information. All these utilities pull this data directly from the information stored in the driver that is associated with each device. Sometimes, however, you will find that Windows will fail to recognize certain PCI devices attached to your computer due to absence of their drivers. PCI-Z is a small, portable tool that overcomes this nuisance by gathering information about the devices installed on your computer even when the drivers are not installed some particular components.
This barebones application is very user-friendly, and I really like the fact that it’s a portable program, which allows you to use it on the go by simply placing its small EXE file on your USB thumb drive. When launched, PCI-Z doesn’t take much time to analyze your system, and immediately presents the relative information about its components. For every item in the list, it shows PCI device name, Vendor, Device, Subsystem and any Error message. You can, of course, sort this information in whichever order you want.
Besides displaying the information users are looking for, it also lets them manually load new database files for any new PCI ID, for let say, a device that wasn’t recognized by the tool automatically. You can also right-click any item from the list and copy its information to another document for later analysis.
PCI-Z also provides a succinct summary of your system including CPU model and its clock speed, computer name, user name, operating system and available RAM.
One last handy feature is that you can export the whole list to a CSV file for backup or analysis. This can come in handy if you need to send the information to someone for diagnosing a system issue.
Overall, PCI-Z is a really simple tool to help users find the right information about their computer’s PCI hardware that they are looking for. It works on Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 8.1.