Last Updated on March 8, 2021
If you want to know how to tell how old is my computer, you’ve come to the right place. The process will vary depending on whether you built the computer yourself or bought a pre-assembled unit. Gauging the exact age of a custom unit can be a little challenging though.
You can use the computer’s serial number and check for its age on the manufacturer’s website. This is easier for prebuilt systems or laptops. Alternatively, you can look at the BIOS version to try and determine the age of the PC. In the case of a custom build, you can try and gauge its age based on the release year of the CPU.
At best, with a custom system, you can get a close approximation of the computer’s age. This is because they use components from different vendors.
How to Tell How Old Is My Computer
Whether you are purchasing a second-hand computer or are interested in knowing the age of a certain device, knowing how to tell how old is my computer can come in handy. Luckily, there are a few ways you can go about doing this.
Commonly, these are 5 methods:
- Contact the Manufacturer
- Perform an Online Search
- Check the BIOS Date
- Checking Age of Custom PC
- Checking Windows Installation Date
1. Contact the Manufacturer
This is by far the best way to get accurate information about the age of your computer. If yours is a pre-built system or a laptop, the manufacturer can provide you with details on the date when the specific device was manufactured.
To get the best results out of this step, you will need one of two things, the computer’s serial number or the exact model name of the same.
The serial number is usually printed on a sticker that gets attached to the device. It contains a lot of information that can help identify a specific computer and removing it is usually discouraged.
If you can’t find the serial number on a sticker anywhere on the computer, you can use a special command if on Windows to read it from the bios. Simply open the command prompt and type this command; “wmic bios get serialnumber” without the quotation marks. It will return the laptop’s serial number.
You can use the computer’s exact model name for this. Simply navigate to the manufacturer’s website and contact their support team. Provide them with details about the computer and where possible, they will give you the information you need.
2. Perform an Online Search
Besides directly contacting the manufacturer, you can do the hard work of searching for the information yourself. With a search engine like Google, paste in the exact model of your computer and look for its date of manufacture.
Places, where you can find reliable information with this method, include, unsurprisingly, the manufacturer’s website or respectable online forums where they discuss these subjects.
Many manufacturers like Dell offer support pages where you can search for information on specific computers, and this can include their manufacturing dates.
3. Check the BIOS Date
The BIOS is the program responsible for booting your computer. Unlike other programs, this one runs on a special chip on the motherboard.
Checking the date when the BIOS was installed can give you a rough estimate of the age of your computer. given that you haven’t update the BIOS since you bought your system (highly unlikely that you would have).
How to tell how old is my computer using information from the BIOS? The easiest way to do it on Windows is to run the System Info program and look for the BIOS date entry.
- On a running computer, open the start menu and search for the program called “System Information”. Run it once you find it. You will get a lot of details about your computer and some of it may be confusing.
- Under the System Summary tab, search the entries to the right, under the column named “Item” for an entry labeled BIOS Version/Date. Once you find it, read the information on the adjacent column named “Value”. The date entry should come after the BIOS version.
- You can achieve the same by opening the command line and typing “systeminfo”. This will still yield the same information for the BIOS version.
There are drawbacks to this method though, and it’s highlighted by the MIOS version entry. If you update your BIOS, the BIOS version will change, and the new date will reflect the date when the BIOS was updated. Hence, you can get inaccurate information if you have already updated your BIOS version.
4. Checking Age of Custom PC
Because custom computers use components from various manufacturers, you can try and get an estimate of the age of the machine itself by looking for the manufacture dates of the various components used on the computer.
Alternatively, you can try and get a rough age by checking the dates when some of the major components like the CPU and the motherboard were made.
Alternatively, if you buy a custom pre-built system, you can check with the seller of the device to find out the approximate age of the computer.
5. Checking Windows Installation Date
This method makes use of Windows installation information on a PC. If the computer has never been reset, you can get a rough estimate of its age from the date when its copy of Windows was installed.
Performing a system reset or reinstalling Windows can change this value and provide wrong information. Additionally, with major Windows updates, the installation date can change and that will also affect the accuracy of the results you get.
Wondering how to tell how old is my computer? There are several ways to do this. If you built the computer yourself, you can get an estimate based on the age of the components you used.
On the other hand, if you own a prebuilt system or a laptop, you can get the age of the device by doing searching online or contacting the manufacturer.
In the case of some devices, the serial number can hint at the age of the device, where some of the characters refer to the year and the week when the device was manufactured.