dmidecode reports information about your system’s hardware as described in your system BIOS according to the SMBIOS/DMI standard. This table contains a description of the system’s hardware components, as well as other useful pieces of information, and typically includes system manufacturer, model name, serial number, BIOS version, asset tag as well as a lot of other details of varying level of interest and reliability depending on the manufacturer. This will often include usage status for the CPU sockets, expansion slots (e.g. AGP, PCI, ISA) and memory module slots, and the list of I/O ports (e.g. serial, parallel, USB).
Thanks to this table, you can retrieve this information without having to probe for the actual hardware. While this is a good point in terms of report speed and safeness, this also makes the presented information possibly unreliable.
The DMI table does not only describe what the system is currently made of, it also can report the possible evolutions (such as the fastest supported CPU or the maximal amount of memory supported).
dmidecode will try to locate the DMI table. If it succeeds, it will then parse this table and display a list of records.
- Supports the following systems:
- Linux i386, x86-64, ia64.
- FreeBSD i386, amd64.
- NetBSD i386, amd64.
- OpenBSD i386, amd64.
- BeOS i386.
- Cygwin i386.
- Solaris x86.
- Haiku i586.
- Three other tools are provided with dmidecode:
- biosdecode – prints all BIOS related information it can find in /dev/mem.
- ownership – retrieves the “ownership tag” that can be set on most Compaq computers.
- vpddecode – prints the contents of the “vital product data” structure as found in most IBM and Lenovo computers.
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