Recently, I fixed my old HP laptop that had a CPU overheating problem. I even replaced the CPU fan with a new one but still, the HP laptop keeps freezing because the AMD Turion 64 CPU on it was simply poorly designed as far as heating problems were concerned.
However I did find a great free software that solved my problems and also helps on desktop PCs too. This might be the best free tool ever for Windows XP/Vista users yet.
The free CPU management software is called Notebook Hardware Control (NHC). It runs on most laptops/desktops flawlessly and automatically controls/throttles your CPU speed/voltage so your CPU never overheats.
After you download the NHC and install it on your Windows XP or Vista computer, go to Settings and click on “Show all NHC options and settings”.
Now, you will be able to more menus. Go to CPU Speed and you can adjust the settings, including your own custom, dynamic switching option.
If you set it to “dynamic switching”, NHC will automatically throttle your CPU frequency just as it’s needed. This will save you a ton of battery life on laptops plus your CPU will last much longer since it’s not running on full 8 cylinders.
The problem with Windows XP and Vista is that the operating system has been designed to basically run on full CPU power.
With NHC, you no longer need to do that. It’s like optimizing your CPU power.
I actually tried couple other programs before this one but I find this one easy to use and most effective. You can also try SpeedswitchXP, which is exclusively for XP machines but works pretty well too.
For my ailing HP laptop, I set the setting to “Battery Optimized” so the CPU will run at its minimal speed. Now, the CPU never overheats, it never even gets hot enough for the CPU fan to come on.
Another suggestion for laptops is to always use “hibernation” mode instead of rebooting Windows everytime if you have CPU overheating problems. Hibernation takes much less CPU power and sometimes with overheating CPUs, you can’t boot unless your CPU has been cooled to room temperature.
Using NHC and hibernation, now my old HP laptop can run just fine. A bit slower than its full CPU capacity but still better than frozen screens.
There’s also additional features in NHC such as showing your actual temperature of your CPU and other chips on your computer/laptop.
I liked it so much, I even put it on my desktop PCs. Now my desktop PCs simply throttle CPU speed to almost nothing if I leave it on while doing something else.
Resources for Controlling your Computer/Laptop CPU Speed
- Notebook Hardware Control (NHC) – Works on Win XP/Vista, works great with desktop PCs also.
- SpeedSwitchXP – Works on Win XP, I initially used this one, it works quite well also with ability to control CPU fan speeds too.
- SpeedFan – SpeedFan is a great way to monitor your CPU temp/speed and more.