Does Windows provide a means to check my CPU temperature natively?
If not, are there any software tools which can reveal this information?
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Windows doesn't expose this information out of the box - you need to install any of a myriad of tools to find it. (For something lightweight, I like Open Hardware Monitor.)
There is no built-in Windows utility to do this, so you need to use another tool.
My personal favorite is SpeedFan. SpeedFan can monitor CPU temperatures, GPU temperatures, S.M.A.R.T. data, hard disk drive temperatures, and more; and if you want to you can also adjust fan speeds with it too.
You might want to take a look at HWMonitor, which shows a wide variety of system sensors.
In addition to temperature, it also shows system voltages, fan speeds, and power consumption - not only for your CPU, but all the hardware connected to your computer that has sensors (including your graphics cards and hard drives).
For a more "advanced" tool (showing much more information), you may want to use HWiNFO.
*** First note that I have only used NVIDIA System Monitor and have no user-knowledge of other tool software for this purpose.
If your PC has an Nvidia graphics card, or installed monitor software, their System Monitor tool is available at nvidia.com. IT IS AMAZING!!!
Add the program to your desktop and you can open the program and instantly know CPU, GPU, and hard disk drive temperatures, as well as memory % in-use, vital multi-core CPU % in-use for each, net data transfer speed and identifies CPU clocking speeds and more.
It also shows fan speeds and allows you to change their settings from auto to manual control easily (I use this feature as a temperature spike preventive on hot Summer days).
I physically clean the inside of my pc more often since I used this program to record a 30° CPU average temperature drop after a good cleaning.
Windows does not provide the necessary tools for monitoring your CPU temperature.
For third-party applications I recommend Core Temp. It displays the current, minimum and maximum temperature for every core. It also includes an "always on top" mode or it can display the current temperature from your system tray.
I use BatteryCare.
It shows the CPU as well as hard disk drive temperature with a simple UI. It has some really awesome features if you are using it on a laptop. To clear some myths about batteries, please read this article.
I have also installed SpeedFan, but rarely do I use it. It is pretty complicated to use plus risky if you don't know what you are doing.
System Information Viewer can check the temperature of each CPU core along with the temperature of other devices that report their values such as memory controller hub, HDD, SSD, GPU, UPS, etc. SIV is designed for Windows 10, 8.1, 8.0, 7, Vista, XP, 2016, 2012, 2008, 2003, 2000 and NT4. Windows 95, 98 and Me are also supported. Most processors that can run Windows are also supported including AMD, Intel, Itanium, DEC Alpha, VIA. Enormous menu has search function to locate which system information value you want to inspect. Rated 4.2/5 on Softpedia.
MooO System Monitor lets you choose by checkbox what to display allowing you to create a desktop widget that can sit off to the side. Was a Softpedia Editor's Choice when it was reviewed long ago, it's on its 64th update (2019/6/15) now. Most recent review (on Chip.de, in German) rates it 4.2/5 last year. Runs on Windows XP/Vista/7/8.1/10 in 45 languages. Skinable and supports up to 8K monitors.
Speccy (by Piriform/CCleaner) Something simpler from somewhere you've heard of, provides basic information in an easy to use traditional styled GUI. Online help file and Menu Find feature to locate the menu you need. There are free and paid versions (and no ADs, just that free version has no support). This is the same company that created Defraggler, arguably the best disk defragmenter (by far).
SIW, along with a temperature display, offers a number of other functions such as displaying passwords hidden behind asterisks, NAC changer, Network Tools, Monitor tester, Browser cookie and history explorer, along access to Windows tools and settings. Available in free (Community Supported) and paid versions. Has a GitHub for viewer utilities.
I'm really surprised that MSI Afterburner has not been mentioned. Downloads from the offical MSI website and is the most trustworthy I can see in the list above. It's a really great tool and does lots of monitoring, not only GPU but CPU and other temperatures as well. Nice system tray icons.