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Is there an easy way I can tell how old a Windows XP machine is?

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

You can tell when Windows XP was originally installed, but this will do nothing for you if your computer was installed from an image at a factory such as Dell or HP because the image was created well before your computer.

If you installed Windows yourself: Start> Run> Type "cmd" and press enter. Then type "systeminfo" and press enter. A bunch of data will flash across the screen. Scroll up to find the "Original Install Date".

Alternatively, most manufacturers put a serial number on the computer. For instance, Dell puts a Service Tag on every PC. You can enter that Service Tag on the manufacturer website to pull up detailed information, including original hardware configuration and the purchase date.

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If you download CPU-Z ( ) and after running the program goto the "About" tab and click on "Save Report (.TXT)". If you update your question with the contents of that file then we can probably give you a good estiamted age.

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Thinking outside the box: You can do what I did and find the original receipt.

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Look on the machine's case, hard disk, PSU and various other components for manufacturer's stickers. Some of these may have dates on them which will be a fairly good indicator of the age of the machine.

Also, on the boot up, you may see copyright dates for the BIOS. Unless the BIOS has been flashed it may also give some indication.

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  1. Check the creation date of your data files (not program files as they can be set by the installer). Drawback, you could have restored the file from a previous machine using software that preserved date/time stamps.

  2. Open the case and look for stickers on components that give their date of manufacture. The latest date is the earliest your machine could have been built. Drawback, the builder might have used really old or second hand components.

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Take a look at your hardware, if the processor wasn't made until 2009 you know it's at most a year and a half old. Look at the amount of memory, it will give you an idea of how old it is.

If you got the PC with Windows XP on it, it is probably at least 3-4 years old.

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