Whether you’re a concerned parent trying to protect your children from inappropriate content, a business owner monitoring employee productivity, or simply someone who wants to keep their computer running smoothly, monitoring software can be a valuable tool.
Today’s IT environments are so complex that it has become almost impossible to manage everything.
That is unless you have a comprehensive monitoring system allowing you to keep a close eye on the condition of your applications and services.
Yes, you can utilize your computer’s task manager but this will never give you the big picture on what is going on inside your PC.
Best Monitoring Software – Product Reviews
Today, we are fortunate to have monitoring software applications available to use and ensure our computers are running efficiently.
But, with so many options on the market, it can be overwhelming trying to choose the right one. That is why we are here to help.
In this article, we’ll explore the best monitoring software for PC, taking into account features, ease of use, and reliability, to help you make an informed decision about which software is right for you.
We begin with Atera, a monitoring software tool that is available as part of two SaaS systems – remote monitoring and management (RMM) and professional services automation (PSA).
Service providers and IT teams monitor an unlimited amount of hardware using this agent-based software solution.
It is also possible to monitor software endpoints and troubleshoot various system problems.
The built-in RMM scripts are able to manage patches, install software, monitor remote connections, and much more seamlessly.
It is also possible to assess and keep track of the health of different assets, networks, applications, and services using Atera’s automated reports and intuitive dashboard.
Moreover, you can also adapt alerts to support faster incident response times.
- Automated software update patches – software update patches occur automatically to keep your PC up-to-date
- Comprehensive functionality – offers a range of features including remote access, patch management, network discovery, and reporting, allowing MSPs to manage their client’s IT infrastructure efficiently
- Integration with other tools – integrates with a variety of third-party tools, including PSA, CRM, and chat software, which helps MSPs streamline their workflows and improve productivity
- Challenging to customize the dashboards – may struggle to customize or amend alerts, reports, and automation features when needed
2. Nzxt Cam
One of the best computer monitoring applications is up next in the form of Nzxt Cam. This allows users to track all device components via one singular app.
For instance, you can monitor the temperatures of certain components, the fan speed, and overclock their speeds, too.
If you overclock a component’s clock rate, it may start to perform more operations every second. In turn this can improve its overall performance.
You can check the memory usage of your computer using the hardware tracking software, as well as set alarms for any errors that may flag.
Nzxt Cam also sends notifications on mobile devices so you can easily monitor your PC or system wherever you are at any time.
Therefore, you can find out what applications are active on your system and tracks your FPS and bandwidth via an in-game overlay. Oh, did we mention it is free to use too? Well, it’s free!
- User-friendly interface – makes it easy to monitor and control PC hardware without needing technical expertise
- Comes with game optimization – this feature can automatically adjust hardware settings for optimal gaming performance
- Free to use – offers a wide variety of features to monitor your PC’s performance and more, all for free
- Buggy software – some users have reported bugs and issues, which may impact its reliability and usability over time
HWiNFO is another fantastic all-in-one hardware monitoring tool that is compatible with a DOC and Microsoft Windows PC.
To get an idea of how reliable this software is, simply consider the fact that NASA have used it to monitor their computer faults in high radiation fields.
Quite the accolade!
HWiNFO delivers in-depth information regarding your PC or system’s hardware.
This software boasts an interface that is completely customizable to suit your needs and also provides users with real-time updates and predictions of possible future failures.
HWiNFO can also be used with other types of software and third-party extensions, delivering a fully complete summary of your system’s performance.
Through status logging, multiple reports, and various interfacing options, you can monitor your computer in detail like never before.
- Customizable interface – various customization options available for the user interface, such as choosing which information is displayed, and which sensors are monitored
- Free and regularly updated – all versions of this app are to use, and the software is regularly updated to support the latest hardware and software
- Comprehensive hardware information – provides detailed and accurate information about various hardware components, including CPU, GPU, memory, storage devices, and much more
- No remote access – this may be inconvenient for technicians who need to monitor hardware parameters on remote computers
- Chance it can cause conflicts with other software – conflicts may occur with other software, especially if they are accessing the same hardware sensors or components
4. AIDA64 Extreme
Our fourth entry on the list is AIDA64 Extreme, another leader in the hardware monitoring industry.
This software provides you with in-depth, detailed information regarding your computer’s hardware and software, including CP temp and CPU usage.
You can use AIDA64 Extreme for overclocking (as explained earlier on) and when running other diagnostic functions so you can find any possible hardware problems.
Over 50 pages of information on installed programs, security applications, window settings, software licenses, and hardware configuration are also provided by AIDA64 Extreme.
And, if you need to, the AIDA64 Extreme Beta is also compatible with some Mac computers, unlike some monitoring software applications.
As well as all this, this application also provides standards or regular readings for all the parts of a computer’s hardware.
Therefore, users can compare the performance of their devices with these set standards.
- Comes with a stress testing module – this allows you to test your PC’s components limits
- Supports over 250 sensor devices – allows you to track your system’s temperatures, fan speeds, voltages, and its power draw
- Benchmarking – provides benchmarking tools for various hardware components, which can help users compare their system’s performance against other systems
- Expensive – it is relatively expensive compared to other similar software, which may limit its appeal for budget-conscious users
5. Sematext Monitoring
Last but not least is this impressive system monitoring software from Sematext. This provides you with end-to-end, real-time visibility on the cloud and different premises.
It gives you detailed insights into your system’s health. It achieves this by centrally monitoring applications, containers, servers, container images, processes, database, events, and much more.
We love how lightweight the Sematext Monitoring agent is, too. It will fit seamlessly into your existing stack but don’t let its lightweight nature fool you.
It offers over 100 integrations for some of the most used application frameworks, including MySQL, PostgreSQL, Apache Cassandra, Solr, MongoDB, and many more.
Orchestration platforms and docker containers, such as Kubernetes, Docker Swarm, and Nomad are given actionable visibility.
The wellbeing of your computer will be in good hands when you use Sematext Monitoring. As soon as any hardware issue is detected, you will get a notification to alert you of the matter via webhooks.
- Very quick setup time – very easy to set up so you can start using the software in only a few minutes
- 14-day free trial – can try the software and its features out first to see if it matches your needs
- Process monitoring – this improves visibility into performance bottlenecks so you can find issues and work on fixing them to get your system working smoothly again
- Can be quite complex for some users – can be overwhelming for users who are new to monitoring due to the wide range of metrics and data points available
There are certain requirements that you should look for when investing in monitoring software.
Whilst our selection of five top-quality applications above will suit many needs, they may not suit yours.
Therefore, you need to consider various factors to find the right one for you and your requirements.
The points below are what we always take into consideration when choosing the best monitoring software applications.
By keeping these in mind, you will surely find the best monitoring software for your PC.
Centralized Management Of Insight And Metrics
When looking into using any type of monitoring software, you’ll need to make sure it provides you with an easy-to-amend and reliable picture of your system’s health, integrity, and performance.
This can typically be offered in the form of robust visualizations and AI-powered analytics via an intuitive dashboard.
Real-time Monitoring And Alerts
Real-time monitoring is essential for quickly detecting issues and minimizing downtime.
Make sure the monitoring software provides real-time monitoring and alerts, so you can take immediate action when necessary.
This way, you can continuously monitor key performance indicators (KPIs) and receive alerts when issues are detected.
Some monitoring software also allows you to set up automated responses to alerts.
For example, you may be able to set up automated scripts to restart a service or application when you receive a notification or an alert is triggered.
This can further reduce the time it takes to address issues and minimize downtime.
Complex Environment Support
The best monitoring software applications can monitor applications that are widely distributed, sporadic components, and a mixture of devices and hosts across various private and public networks and clouds.
Think About Your Own Monitoring Needs
One of the first steps is to identify the specific metrics and data points you wish to monitor.
This, of course, will depend on your IT infrastructure and the applications you use.
Start by making a list of the key performance indicators (KPIs) and metrics that are important to you and your organization.
High Automation Levels
Look for a monitoring tool that can open tickets automatically. These tickets should hold in-depth information on your system’s activities that caused or led to the issue detected.
They should also trigger automated workflows that may even fix the issue. For instance, it may have the capacity to shut down a service that has been compromised or deploy a necessary patch.
Moreover, the software should be able to perform preventive maintenance without much or any human help.
The Type Of Monitoring
There are various types of monitoring, such as network monitoring, application monitoring, server monitoring, and log monitoring.
Decide which types of monitoring you need based on your IT infrastructure and applications. This can cut down the field and make it easier deciding which software is best for you.
Select software that offers you a complete set of real-time and historical reports. This can aid in compliance auditing as well as capacity and budget planning.
These reports should also be customizable as all systems are unique from each other.
It is essential to receive not just adequate, but good technical support when it comes to monitoring software.
Look for software providers that offer comprehensive technical support, including online forms, documentation, and direct support from technical experts.
That way, if you get confused or stuck with any issues, you can contact the support team and they can guide you through the necessary steps to amend your issues.
As with anything, you must consider the cost of your monitoring software.
This is especially important with these types of applications as their costs can vary widely depending on the features, scalability, and number of hosts you need to monitor.
Look for software that fits your budget, but also provides the features and functionality you need.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Exactly Is Monitoring Software?
We’re guessing you already know this if you’ve read this far, but let’s clear things up for those you may still be a little unsure of what monitoring software actually is.
Generally speaking, monitoring software is a type of software that, you guessed it, monitors and tracks certain aspects of your computer’s applications, infrastructure, and various systems in real-time.
It does this by monitoring performance, usage, availability, and overall security.
Monitoring software can help individuals, as well as organizations to detect issues before they become critical, and to optimize system performance.
In other words, it allows you to take action before a technical issue does irreversible damage to your IT system.
What Are Some Common Features Of Monitoring Software?
The features found in monitoring software can vary, depending on the exact application you’re dealing with.
Some offer far more features than others, but many of these come with higher price plans.
That being said, there are some common features that most monitoring software applications share.
These include real-time monitoring and alerts, customizable dashboards and reports, integration with other tools and services, automated responses to issues, and the ability to monitor multiple systems and applications from a central location.
If you’re new to monitoring software, these are the fundamental features you should be looking for.
As you become more experienced, you can start to look for further functions to meet your growing needs.
What Are Some Of The Main Benefits Of Monitoring Software?
Monitoring software can provide numerous benefits, including improved system performance, reduced downtime and outages, increased uptime and availability, faster issue detection and resolution, and improved security.
Your PC’s system performance can improve thanks to the monitoring application’s ability to help identify and diagnose performance issues.
In turn, this allows you to optimize system performance and prevent issues from affecting end-users.
One of its main advantages that users often overlook is that it improves overall system security.
By this, we mean that monitoring software can help detect security threats so you can take action and certain measures to protect your PC and its data.
What Types Of Monitoring Can Be Performed With Monitoring Software?
You can monitor a wide range of systems, infrastructures, and applications with monitoring software.
Some examples included servers, network devices, databases, virtual machines, cloud services, and web applications.
There are many more that we could write a whole article on, too. You will also find that some monitoring software also provides log management and analysis capabilities.
There are many factors to consider when looking to use monitoring software.
It can be very confusing for newbies to the world of IT monitoring, but with a little research and time, it becomes clearer that monitoring software is essential in ensuring your IT systems run smoothly.
By picking up on any possible issues, you can tackle them before they cause too much damage to your PC.
We hope this guide has helped you understand monitoring software more and hopefully you have found the right application for your computing needs.