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Windows 7 - Basics-DXdiag

In today's computer age, basic PC skills are essential to perform all sorts of activities from work tasks to from communicating with friends to shopping. If you don't have a background in computing, all of the features computers offer may seem intimidating, but learning how to use the utilities that come with your computer can increase productivity and help you troubleshoot problems. The DirectX Diagnostic Tool is a built in Windows system utility that can help you determine whether certain system devices are working properly and gather information about the hardware installed in your computer.

Calling the DirectX Diagnostic Tool
Bringing up the DirectX Diagnostic Tool requires just a few simple steps on PCs running Windows 7 and Windows Vista. Click on the "Start" button, type "dxdiag" into the search text field at the bottom of the start menu and then press the "enter" key. The DirectX Diagnostic Tool window will appear after a brief delay. If you are running Windows XP, click "Start," "Run," type "dxdiag" into the "Run" text field and then click "OK" to call the utility.

System Information
When you first call the DirectX Diagnostic Tool, it will be set to the first of several tabs, which displays basic system information. Information displayed includes the name of your PC, the manufacturer, your version of Windows, your BIOS version, processor information, your total memory and your version of Direct X. Pulling up the DirectX utility is a quick and easy way to access a list of vital PC information.

Display Tab
The DirectX Diagnostic Tool has a few tabs along the top that serve as categories for different types system of devices. If you click on the "Display" tab, the utility will display detailed information about your system's graphics card. Information listed includes the name of the card, the manufacturer, the amount of video memory, the driver, driver version and driver installation date. If your video card is functioning properly the notes section at the bottom of the window should read, "No problems found."

Other Tabs
The DXdiag tool can have several other tabs at the top depending on your system configuration. The "Sound" tab shows information about your audio devices and the "Input" tab show information about device attached to the computer like mice and keyboards. Each tab other contains a notes section that shows whether the utility has discovered problems with system devices.

Saving System Information
Viewing your computer's system information on your own PC can be useful, but it may also be necessary to send your system information someone else. The DirectX Diagnostic Tool makes it easy to save system information in a text file: just click the "Save All Information…" button at the bottom of the tool, choose a save destination and then click "Save." You can send the file to yourself as an email attachment to have access to your system information whenever you need it.


Microsoft Windows is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and other countries. Speed improvements vary based on your system configuration. ErrorTeck is not endorsed or affiliated with either Microsoft or the third party applications it supports.