Tips & Advice on Collecting Hardware Inventory Info in LANs/WANs

Here you can find tips and expert advice on collecting hardware inventory info from network PCs, computer hardware audit and related topics.

This site is a collection of articles, tips and tricks about collecting and auditing computer hardware inventory information in Microsoft networks. Hardware inventory procedures described on this site are aimed to help network administrators and IT professionals to perform hardware audit in order to get information about all hardware assets used by a company or organization, plan software upgrades and perform other hardware inventory tasks.

The articles below can help you to understand different hardware audit methods and utilities that can be used to collect hardware inventory information. These articles also explain strong and weak points of hardware audit approaches and explain how to automate hardware inventory tasks and procedures.

Overview of Hardware Inventory Software and Hardware Audit Approaches

Imagine few typical scenarios of IT support tasks - you need to add memory to one of PCs, report a model and serial number of the video adapter installed there and check a free space on HDD. What these tasks have in common? They all require to perform a hardware audit in order to get information about empty memory slots, video adapter and HDD. Having this hardware inventory information in this particular case you will decide how many memory you can install and if you need to replace HDD, in other words it's critical for any kind of hardware maintenance, upgrade planning and other IT support tasks. You can save significant amount of time and efforts and make better planning if you have an access to the up-to-date hardware inventory information. Continue reading

How to Extract Basic Hardware Inventory Info Using PsInfo Utility

PsInfo is a command-line utility that is a part of Sysinternals toolkit named PsTools. This utility can be used to extract basic software and hardware inventory information from the local or remote Windows system. Reported hardware inventory information includes a number of processors and their specification, physical memory summary and information about logical disks. This inventory tool is also reports basic software information including Windows version, Windows registration information, Windows installation date and activation status. It can also report a list of installed OS hotfixes and their installation dates. Continue reading

How to Perform Hardware Audit Using WMI Commands and Tools

Starting from Windows XP and Windows 2003 Windows Management Instrumentation Command-line (WMIC) is a primary interface for performing hardware audit and executing other Windows management actions. WMIC extends WMI for operation from several command-line interfaces and through batch scripts. Before WMIC, you have to have a programming experience to use WMI, but do-it-yourself systems management with WMI was difficult. WMIC changes this situation by giving you a powerful, user-friendly interface to the WMI namespace. Hardware audit with WMIC is more intuitive then WMI and is the recommended approach if you prefer to make audit operation from the command line. Continue reading

Useful Resources
  • WMI Reference contains information about infrastructure that provides an access to software and hardware inventory information on Windows-based operating systems.
  • Microsoft Script Center is aimed to educate network administrators how to use Windows PowerShell and other scripting solutions to perform audit, inventory, management and other administrative tasks.