HWiNFO Setup for a Beginner


New Member
Hi All. Based on recommendations from this sub (thanks!), I've installed HWiNFO on my new PC. On my previous machine I relied on Open Hardware Monitor for the "same" functionality.
As you can probably imagine, I am quite overwhelmed by all of the additional info now available to me. I don't even know what half of these parameters represent!
Could somebody recommend a good "gateway" setup to help me transition to the harder drug that is HWiNFO? Like for example what parameters can I safely hide because they are only meaningful to the hardest core users among us?
I liked that OpenHardwareMonitor gave me everything in a single screen (i.e. no scrolling necessary), so I'd like to get it to that level if at all possible (without giving up any important information, of course).
On a related note, is it possible to import somebody else's settings into the program? The small amount of poking around I've done suggests that customizing my layout could be a very long progress (I have to hide parameters one at a time?).
Thanks in advance. Hopefully with your help I can become a power user myself someday and pay it forward!
A few hints for more quickly removing sensors you don't want to see:
  • You can click on the dark gray header of any sensor group and press shift-delete to remove the whole group all at once.
  • You can click any sensor (or header), scroll down a bunch, shift click any other sensor (or header) and press shift-delete to remove 100's of sensors at once.
  • You can click one sensor (or header) and then hold Ctrl (the control key) while you click as many more sensors (or headers) as you like then remove then let go of Ctrl and press shitf-delete to get rid off all the ones you've highlighted that way.
To enable seeing more on one screen, click the "Expand window" button at the very bottom left of the sensor window to add another column of sensors. You can do this several times.

I am also somewhat new to HWiNFO so there may be better ways to do these next two, but when you first launch HWiNFO and see the small screen with the program info, two check boxes and two buttons, if you click the settings button that opens the settings dialogue. From the first tab, General/User Interface, you can click the Backup User Settings button to write all your current configuration (including which sensors you've removed, window sizing, etc.) to a file that you can later load if you want to (it creates a .reg file you can double click from Windows Explorer to load the settings into your registry while HWiNFO is not running). You can also click the "Reset Preferences" button to return everything to initial state including all the available sensors.

If you click the gear icon on the bottom of the sensor window (second from the right) you go to the Sensor Settings dialogue. On the general tab you can set a hotkey to turn logging on and off which can be useful if you want to see how values change during the course of a benchmark test. I've found leaving the window visible while benchmarking reduces scores around 5% but minimizing it, either with or without logging, has no noticeable/measurable impact on scores. One the second tab of the sensor settings dialogue, layout, you can select one or more (shift-click and control-click work here too) hidden sensors to add back if you hid something you later decide you want.

I don't think I'm experienced enough to tell you what the important sensors to monitor are, but one thing you can do pretty quickly is eliminate all the ones that don't seem to change or give valid values. Make sure your sensor window is open while your system is otherwise idle then start up something to load your CPU and GPU like 3D Mark, or one thing to load your GPU like Fur Mark or Heaven or whatever and another thing to load your CPU like CPU-z's benchmark tab, Prime95, Cinebench, AIDA64, whatever and let that all run for a few minutes and then stop the load. Go back to your sensor window and look for any metrics where the Min and Max are the same or seem to give wrong data (temperatures between below 20c, 0 RMP max fans, Voltages always 0, etc.). You can also remove anything unrelated to what you're trying to tune or monitor though I don't have a lot of specific advice there.