HWSensors / HWMonitor App - Free Mac tool shows temperatures and other system values

A few months ago I met you as part of the Laptop cooler test from AUKEY CP-R2 introduced the system monitor or system monitor, the demo version of which I used for the test series on the Mac. The tool shows the processor temperature, the current RAM usage and other values. But now I stumbled across another, fully free Mac tool for reading out temperatures and many other system values. The project HWSensors with the macOS app HWMonitor shows significantly more values, has a better user interface and also offers the measured values ​​in a diagram as a graph.

The two HWMonitor windows with a list of values ​​and diagrams, which show the data read out by sensors in the Mac. Details and the HWSensors download can be found in this test post.

The two HWMonitor windows with a list of values ​​and diagrams, which show the data read out by sensors in the Mac. Details and the HWSensors download can be found in this test post.

HWSensors with HWMonitor App

The freeware HWSensors for reading sensor values ​​from the Apple Mac, iMac and MacBook is a good alternative to iStat Menus and the full version of the System Monitor mentioned above. It is also open source (see Github download below) and resourceful developers can adapt it for their purposes. If you don't want to tinker, but want to use a ready-made tool to monitor the temperatures, fan speed and the like on the Apple Mac, you can also look at the dmg file of the HW Monitor App download - also for free.

Features and sensor access on the Mac

Before I get to the HWSensor download or the HWMonitor download, here is a list of the features and sensor accesses that you get delivered with the software with a look and feel:

  • Icon and program call in the macOS menu bar
  • List of all sensors and measured values
  • Diagram showing the values ​​over time as a graph
  • Most values ​​and menu items are output in German
  • Output of temperatures: CPU (processor), GPU (graphics processor), processor environment, chipset, memory modules, graphics card, airport, heat pipes, hard disk, etc.
  • SMART values ​​with estimated remaining life of the hard disk
  • Fan speeds: e.g. left and right fan on the MacBook Pro
  • Voltages in volts to processor, 12V rail, power supply, etc.
  • Amperages in amperes on the processor, CPU rail, GPU, battery, mainboard, etc.
  • Performance in watts of the processor, GPU parts, graphics card line, battery rail, mainboard rail and the system as a whole
  • Battery charge in percent (may differ from the system display)
  • Diagrams for all values ​​with highlighting of selected values ​​/ components
Mac sensor measurements such as CPU temperature, GPU temperature, utilization and fan speed as diagrams.

Mac sensor measurements such as CPU temperature, GPU temperature, utilization and fan speed as diagrams.

HWMonitor settings: temperature unit, menu bar, dark mode

Click on the gear wheel in the top left of the drop-down window of the HWMonitor app and then on Settings ..., then you get to a comprehensive overview of further possibilities of the free Mac tool. Here is a brief summary of the four tabs in the Settings window:

  • General: Selection of the temperature unit ° C / ° F, update frequency of the sensor values ​​and the SMART measurement, activation / deactivation of notifications (see below), start at login
  • Menu bar: Here you can select which values ​​and symbols should be displayed in the menu bar. Similar to the iStat Menus or the system monitor, the values ​​can be monitored at all times.
  • Popup: Selection of the design of the main window (blue / gray, dark gray / light gray, dark blue / black as dark mode) and other display options
  • Diagrams: Scaling and other options such as smoothing the graph and updating in the background

If HWMonitor is annoying: notifications for exhausted systems

It is always good to know when the computer is overheating or is reaching its limits in some other way. But if you can't give it a break, reduce the load or provide additional cooling, then it will stay at its limit for a certain period of time. If this happens with activated notifications of the HWMonitor, then one push message after the other comes. So if the work has to be finished and you can't stand the small windows in the upper right corner, then turn off the notifications in the settings under “General”. Once the work is done, the Mac can then rest.

HWSensors download 

If you want to download HWSensors, i.e. the open source project with all the individual files for tinkering, developing and integrating into your own projects or apps, then you will find the download on this GitHub page.

HWMonitor download

If you want a finished dmg that provides the finished program for reading out temperatures, SMART values ​​and other sensor values ​​on the Apple Mac, you can find the download on that GitHub subpage.

Extended display, fan control, etc.

SourceForge also has a page about HWSensors ( here). This shows further functions of the HWMonitor Tool. Among other things, the call of much more extensive values ​​for the drives and individual control of the Mac fans. 

Source: SourceForge

Source: SourceForge

I didn't find these features in the version of the GitHub page linked above, although this seems to be the most current version of the app. If you have a tip about the difference to the SourceForge version, please leave an insightful comment;)


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  1. peter arens says:

    Hello SIR APPLE,
    best thanks for this helpful article!
    One of the most important differences between the two versions is
    that the GitHub version works only on newer Mac OS versions, for example Sierra (10.12.6),
    whereas the SourceForge version also works on older Mac OS versions for example Mavericks (10.9.5).
    Kind regards, Peter Arens

  2. Hesi says:

    According to Little Snitch, why does HWSensors want to connect to sarah.runtnc.net? At first I thought it was an update server, but for Windows users this (the domain?) Seems to have something to do with viruses.

    • sir appleot says:

      Hello Hessi! Good hint. You'd have to ask the developer that. ;-)
      But it shouldn't actually be part of the basic function that software calls home. Little Snitch is a nice tool for such cases!

  3. sir carl says:

    A very extensive and beautiful article - thank you!

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