There are many tools and applications that you can use in Windows when it comes to weeding out and finding hardware-related problems. The Device Manager is one of them, but there are other alternatives as well.
There are other diagnostic tools that come with the hardware component when you bought them. You just have to look for them and be careful not to lose any of the disks or CD’s that came along with the hardware purchase.
Generally, they’re not part of the Windows operating system but they’re specially designed to detect any problem that your hardware component (that you bought with it) has. The only disadvantage is that you have to find the disks that came with it.
Sometimes, they even self-install or self-extract when you install your hardware component and its corresponding device driver. For example, I bought a network card about a decade ago which has a diskette where the diagnostic tool is contained.
Let’s see some tips and reminders when using diagnostic tools that came with your hardware:
– Your PC itself could have a diagnostic tool. You can find it in its Set-Up program – this is the program that runs on the background when your computer starts. There’s a message like “Press F2 Key To Enter Setup”. Once you press that key, you’ll find a diagnostic tool that you can use for testing all of your computer’s components.
– Not every hardware component can be tested though. That’s something you need to keep in mind. Number one on this list is your PC’s RAM (Random Access Memory). Having a diagnostic tool for your RAM is questionable. Think about it – it has to reside in your computer’s temporary memory…so how can it test your RAM?
Having a messed up RAM is means having a messed up PC. I’d advise you to go to your computer dealer or trusted computer technician to take a look at your RAM if you’re suspecting that it’s causing all of the problems.
– There are 2 types of diagnostic tools/programs around. One simply reports what hardware components you have and tells you what’s missing. On the other hand, there are diagnostic programs that tests and reports the results. The latter is way better since it will give you an idea what’s wrong with your PC’s hardware components.