What is the most accurate way, within reason, to determine when Windows Computer was purchased programmatically?

The receipt has long since been lost and someone is trying to figure out when the PC was purchased.

  • What do you mean by age? The various components were all manufactured at different times. If you're talking about when it was assembled, short of trying to find out from the manufacturer, njd's answer is about as close a guess as you're going to get. But it's still just a guess. – BBlake Apr 23 '10 at 13:25
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    check its teeth. the older ones will have very worn-down molars. – quack quixote Apr 23 '10 at 13:55
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    My current computer started as an Athlon 64 3000+, about 5 years ago, although it happens to have an old Adaptec 2940U SCSI card that's 10+ years old, and an Intel 100 Mbps Ethernet card that's of similar vintage. When Socket 939 was dying out a couple of years later, I upgraded the CPU to an Athlon 64 X2 3800+. Sometime after that, I replaced the hard drive with two new ones. How old is my computer? – coneslayer Apr 23 '10 at 13:58
  • @Coneslayer - Its only as old as the software it feels ;-) – Joe Taylor Apr 23 '10 at 14:46
systeminfo | findstr /C:"Install Date"

and looking for the BIOS version will also give you a clue:

systeminfo | findstr /C:"BIOS Version"
  • If you have access to the physical internals of the computer, i.e. if you can open the case, and if you are willing to go through the trouble, you might find some date labels on some components (like the hard drive).
    I've used this method several times successfully, but it depends on where the computer was bought (small company, big vendor like Dell, internet, ...) and if they have a habit of sticking date labels to certain components.

  • If it is a computer from a notable manufacturer (Dell, HP, Apple, ...) you might try to look for a sticker with a service tag, and enter that service tag somewhere on the company's website. Some vendors show the purchase date.


Everest can show this and lots of other info about your PC.


If you mean: "When was Windows installed on this PC?" then for manually installed Windows you could look at the creation date of the Windows directory. This wouldn't work if the PC was cloned from a from a pre-made system image, such as a PC from large OEMs/corporate PCs. But if you know that you created your user account around the time the computer was first booted from the image then look at the creation date of your user directory. I'm assuming that you're using NTFS & not FAT-32 as the disk format :)

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