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How to Set the CPU Fan Speed

Updated March 23, 2017

The Central Processing Unit (CPU) of your computer handles the "processing" demands of the software applications in the operating system. The CPU tends to generate heat based on the amount of processing power required by the operating system. One of the ways this heat is dissipated is through the use of a CPU fan. The right fan speed on your computer will create the best balance between fan noise and cooling ability. To set the CPU fan speed, you can either use the free SpeedFan application or manually configure the BIOS settings of your computer.

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  1. Click "Start," then "Shut Down" followed by "Restart." Your computer will restart. Press the correct key to enter the BIOS. Your computer will briefly display a message stating which key to press to enter the BIOS. A common key is the "F8" key.

  2. Scroll through the tabs in the BIOS menu using the arrow keys on your keyboard. Press the "Enter" key on the "System Setup" or "Configuration Settings" tab. The "CPU fan speed" configuration options will be located under one of these tabs.

  3. Press the relevant key to adjust the fan speed. For example, press the "Enter" key or the "+" or "-" keys to scroll through the fan speeds. Select the fan speed you want to set. Scroll to the "Save and Exit" button and press the "Enter" key. You will exit the BIOS and your computer will finish booting up.

  4. Go to the SpeedFan website (see Resources) and click the "Download" tab from the menu bar at the top of the web page. The Download page will open. Click "SpeedFan" under the Download section. The program will automatically download to your computer.

  5. Click "Yes" when the installer asks if you want to install the software. The installation wizard will start. Follow the prompts from the wizard to install the application. For example, you must agree to the Terms of Service in order for the installation to proceed. Click "Finish" when the installation has completed.

  6. Click "Start," then "Programs" and select "SpeedFan" from the list. The SpeedFan application will open. Click the "Configure" button on the main screen to open the Configure window.

  7. Click the "Advanced" tab followed by the "Fan speeds" tab. Click the up or down arrow keys next to the "CPU Fan" box to adjust the speed of the CPU fan. Select the fan speed you require and click "Save" to set it.

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About the Author

An avid technology enthusiast, Steve Gregory has been writing professionally since 2002. With more than 10 years of experience as a network administrator, Gregory holds an Information Management certificate from the University of Maryland and is pursuing MCSE certification. His work has appeared in numerous online publications, including Chron and GlobalPost.

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