In years gone by, the CPU on your PC will be a single-core piece of silicon. As performance demands increase, instead of installing multiple CPUs, multiple processing units are packed on a single CPU.
It’s not uncommon to find these six or eight ‘cores’ on a consumer CPU these days. In the future, you can expect more than this. Intel recently pulled back the caps on its most powerful desktop CPU, boasting an incredible 28 cores.
So how can you see how many cores your PC processor has? Here’s how to find out.
How to see the number of cores in your CPU
No need to open the case of your laptop or PC to know how many cores are inside. Thankfully, there is a very easy way to find this information in Windows itself.
To do so, go to Start Menusearch Workflow management, then select it from the list of results that appear. Alternatively, you can press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.
At the top of the window that appears, you will see several tabs. Option Performance and the main frame will change to show the current status of the CPU.
Below the chart you will see a list of Core: with the number included on your CPU shown on the right.
Below that is Logic processor: shows total cores if you include virtual cores used for concurrent multithreading.
To see what each logic processor is doing, right click on the graph can choose Change Graph to > Logical Processor. Below you can see the load per core. You will also note that the number of cores is the same as the number of logical processors here. That’s because Core i5 processors (for the most part) don’t support Hyper-Threading.
If the reason you’re trying to deconstruct your system is to see if you can play the latest open-world FPS or RPG, then you should consider upgrading to a different part of your PC.
Check out our recommendations for the best graphics cards, as upgrading your graphics card can be the best solution when it comes to making games run better.
What does the core do?
Each core essentially acts as a CPU in its own right. This allows them to process the numbers needed to complete computational tasks be it to run programs, display graphics (although this is usually handled by dedicated cards) or any other anything else the system requires.
With more cores, more tasks can be completed in a shorter amount of time, and this has the effect of speeding up performance while also allowing the PC to run harder applications.
You’ll often see another feature mentioned alongside cores: Hyper-Threading. This is Intel’s name for processing multiple threads at the same time and uses clever technology to create virtual CPU cores that the operating system treats as real cores. than Hyperthreading.
Some AMD CPUs also use virtual cores, but it uses the term SMT – concurrent multithreading.
Virtual cores can improve performance, but only in a small way when compared to real cores. physical core and run at the same speed.
For more information on what makes your computer tick, see What hardware is inside my PC?
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