How to find my computer's graphics card

Written by ruri ranbe
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How to find my computer's graphics card
(Hemera Technologies/ Images)

If you simply want to find updates for your graphics card driver, but are not sure what type of card you have installed on your computer, you can use Windows' Device Manager to find your card's information. On the other hand, if you want to replace your computer's graphics card, you will need to know where the card itself is located on your computer. A graphics card can be installed to an AGP or PCI slot (expansion slots for extra hardware), or it can be directly installed to the motherboard.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Screwdriver

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  1. 1

    Click "Start," then "All Programs," then "Accessories." Click "Run."

  2. 2

    Type "devmgmt.msc" in the text field. Click "OK" to open Device Manager. If a User Account Control window appears asking for your permission to continue, click "Continue."

  3. 3

    Click the plus sign located next to "Display Adapters" to find the name of your graphics card. If there is more than one driver displayed, it's possible that you have both a graphics card installed to one of the expansion slots on your computer and an on-board graphics card installed to your motherboard itself.

  1. 1

    Power down your PC, then remove any and all cables or cords connected to it. Unscrew or slide off the case covering your PC.

  2. 2

    Touch the computer's chassis to discharge any static electricity. This will prevent electrostatic discharge from damaging your computer's components.

  3. 3

    Search the rear of your motherboard for a thin, rectangular piece of hardware, sticking out from the motherboard at a 90 degree angle. Unless you have another kind of PCI card installed to your computer (PCI slots can accommodate cards other than graphics cards, such as a sound cards, USB or FireWire cards, or modems), this should be your graphics card.

Tips and warnings

  • If you do not see a card sticking out from your motherboard as described, then your computer is likely equipped with on-board graphics. That means that the graphics card is integrated into the motherboard itself and cannot be removed.
  • To determine whether or not your PCI card is a graphics card or some other type of card, look for a fan installed on the surface of the card. If no fan is present, look at the VGA or DVI ports (the ports you plug your monitor into) on the back of the computer and see if they line up with the card slot.
  • If you have more than one graphics driver installed on your computer, right-click each card, then click "Properties." The card not in use should be labelled as "Disabled."

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