Hardware lister B.02.09 review

by rbytes.net on

lshw (Hardware Lister) is a small tool to provide detailed information on the hardware configuration of the machine. Hardware list

License: GPL (GNU General Public License)
File size: 1078K
Developer: Lyonel Vincent
0 stars award from rbytes.net

lshw (Hardware Lister) is a small tool to provide detailed information on the hardware configuration of the machine.

Hardware lister can report exact memory configuration, firmware version, CPU version and speed, cache configuration, bus speed, mainboard configuration, etc. On DMI-capable x86 or EFI (IA-64) systems and on some PowerPC machines (PowerMac G4 is known to work).

Information can be output in plain text, XML or HTML.

It currently supports DMI (x86 and EFI only), OpenFirmware device tree (PowerPC only), PCI/AGP, ISA PnP (x86), CPUID (x86), IDE/ATA/ATAPI, PCMCIA (only tested on x86), USB and SCSI.

Linux 2.4.x or 2.6.x (2.2.x might work, though)
a PA-RISC, Alpha, IA-64 (Itanium), PowerPC or x86 based machine
an ANSI (or close enough to ANSI compliance) C++ compiler (tested with g++ 2.95.4 and 3.2.2)
for the (optional) GTK+ graphical user interface, you will need a complete GTK+ 2.4 development environment (gtk2-devel on RedHat/Fedora derivatives)

on x86, lshw needs to be run as root to be able to access DMI information from the BIOS
running lshw as a non-root user usually gives much less detailed information
lshw is sometimes confused about where to connect emulated SCSI devices (like USB storage devices, IEEE1394 disks and SCSI-over-IDE CD writers). This will hopefully be fixed on version 2.6 kernels by using sysfs.


unpack the source code:
tar xvfz lshw-release.tar.gz
compile it:
cd lshw-release
you can also build the optional GUI: make gui
if you want to build an RPM package:
rpmbuild -ta lshw-release.tar.gz
or, to include the optional GUI: rpmbuild -ta --with gui lshw-release.tar.gz


lshw [format] [options... ]
where format can be
-X to launch the GUI (if available)
-html to activate HTML mode
-xml to activate XML mode
-short to print hardware paths
-businfo to print bus information

and options can be
-enable TEST to enable a test
-disable TEST to disable a test
-class CLASS to limit the output to a given class
-C CLASS alias for -class CLASS

NOTE: to use some features (like DMI on x86 platforms), you need to run lshw as root or it will only report partial information.

What's New in This Release:
lshw now uses the sysfs (/sys) filesystem to scan PCI devices when available.
Several annoyances and minor bugs have been fixed.

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