How to Determine Clock Speed on My Computer

Level of difficulty: Intermediate

Determining the clock speed of computer is relatively easy. It is important to understand the meaning of the clock speed in a computer. Computers utilized an internal clock in synchronizing all processes and calculations. This internal clock guarantees that each and every circuit within the computer works and operates at the same time. The ticks per second on the internal clock measure the computer’s clock speed. It is important to remember that the misconception that a computer clock’s speed is the sole determinant of a computer’s overall speed.

Materials Needed:
- Computer
- Operating System
Step 1
Understand a computer’s clock speed indicated by MHz or GHz. The unit of measurement used to measure a computer’s clock speed is called a hertz (Hz). This denotes one cycle per second and measures a clock’s speed. In computer clock speed, one hertz is equivalent to one tick per second. A computer’s clock speed is normally measured in MHz (megahertz) or GHz (gigahertz). A megahertz is equal to one million ticks per second while one gigahertz is equal to one billion ticks per second. A computer with the clock speed of 600MHz runs at 600,000,000 cycles per second, while a 2.0GHz computer runs at 2,000,000,000 cycles per second.
Step 2
Clock speed is used as an approximate measurement of a computer’s speed in calculation and processing data. Measuring how fast a computer by using its clock speed has been a source of contention among groups and companies. A computer with a clock speed of 1.5MHZ is slower than one with a clock speed of 2.4MHz. This is not always the case. The computer’s speed relies on a number of factors, the amount of RAM a computer has and its clock speed, the cache size, and the clock speed of the front-side bus.
Step 3
On a computer’s Desktop, right click on 'My Computer' and select 'Properties'.
Step 4
On the System Properties window, on the 'General' tab, locate on the lower right the 'Computer' caption. Below it is the clock speed of the computer denoted by either MHz or GHz beside a description of the computer’s memory size. The program that determines the computer clock speed is called Sandra.
Step 5
Some computer technicians or enthusiasts upgrade a computer’s clock speed or a processor’s speed by overclocking it. Overclocking a computer makes the processor perform faster than it is intended and may produce an increase in a computer’s speed. Producers of processors and chipsets warn that the increase in clock speed is minor compared to the effort of overclocking and risk of destroying the chipset.