How to know your hard disk type

A computer with an SSD will always boot faster than a computer with HDD

By GizBot Bureau

2016 marked the 60th anniversary of Hard Disk Drives (HDD). While new computers have gravitated towards Solid State Disks (SSDs) for main storage, those of us who look for low-cost, high-capacity data storage always turn to HDDs.

How to know your hard disk type


The speed at which files can be transferred and the number of files that can be transferred simultaneously is vital to gauge how your day-to-day interaction with your system goes. If detailed information about your hard disk drives, solid-state drives or other storage that is associated with your system is what you’re looking for, the following methods can be used to do so:

1) System Information in Windows 10

2) Earlier versions of Microsoft Windows

3) IBM compatible users

4) Determining the speed or RPM

5) Third-party utilities

6) Other disk utilities

7) Other methods

System information in Windows 10

You can access the System Information Utility in Windows 10 to get information about your hardware.

a) Open the Start Menu.

b) Under W, expand Windows Administrative Tools.

c) Choose System Information.

You can also use the Run box to open the System Information Utility:

a) Press Win + R

b) Type msinfo32 in the Run box.

c) Click OK, or press Enter.

In the System Information window, the left window pane will have a list of hardware categories. Expand Components, and then Storage. After that, choose Drives, Disks, or any category that you would like to take a look at.

Earlier Versions of Microsoft Windows

If you are using earlier versions of Windows, the following steps have to be taken:

a) Click on the Start button and then tap on the “Programs” folder.

b) Next, click on the “Accessories” and then tap on the “System Information” or “System Tools” folder.

c) Open the “System Information” file.

d) Inside the System Information window, click on the + symbol that can be found next to Components.


e) Click the “+” that is next to “Storage” and then tap on “Drives”. The information about your hard drives like capacity and serial number can be found on the right side of the window.

IBM compatible users

IBM compatible users can view additional information about their hard drive by entering the computer’s CMOS setup. The CMOS will list the hard drive’s serial number, model number, cylinders, heads, sectors, and the size of the hard drive.

Determining the speed or RPM of a hard drive

You can determine the RPM of a hard drive by first figuring out the manufacturer and model of the hard drive. You can then look up the information about the RPM of the drive on the manufacturer's web page.

There are manufacturers who list the RPM of the hard drive on the actual drive as well. You can take your hard drive out of your computer to take a look at the top sticker to see if the RPM has been listed.

Third-party utilities

You can make use of free software utilities that are designed to detect the hardware in your computer.

Other disk utilities

There are disk utilities that are designed to detect and set up a hard drive that is capable of providing a user with additional information about the hard drive.

Other methods of determining the hard drive.

You can read the information that is usually on stickers that are stuck to the top of a hard disk.

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