DMIDECODE(8) System Manager's Manual DMIDECODE(8)
dmidecode - DMI table decoder
dmidecode is a tool for dumping a computer's DMI (some say SMBIOS) ta-
ble contents in a human-readable format. This table contains a descrip-
tion of the system's hardware components, as well as other useful
pieces of information such as serial numbers and BIOS revision. 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
The DMI table doesn't 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).
SMBIOS stands for System Management BIOS, while DMI stands for Desktop
Management Interface. Both standards are tightly related and developed
by the DMTF (Desktop Management Task Force).
As you run it, dmidecode will try to locate the DMI table. If it suc-
ceeds, it will then parse this table and display a list of records like
DMI type 2, 8 bytes.
Base Board Information
Product Name: C440GX+
Serial Number: INCY92700942
Each record has:
o A handle. This is a unique identifier, which allows records to refer-
ence each other. For example, processor records usually reference
cache memory records using their handles.
o A type. The SMBIOS specification defines different types of elements
a computer can be made of. In this example, the type is 2, which
means that the record contains "Base Board Information".
o A size. Each record has a 4-byte header (2 for the handle, 1 for the
type, 1 for the size), the rest is used by the record data. This
value doesn't take text strings into account (these are placed at the
end of the record), so the actual length of the record may be (and is
often) greater than the displayed value.
o Decoded values. The information presented of course depends on the
type of record. Here, we learn about the board's manufacturer, model,
version and serial number.
-d, --dev-mem FILE
Read memory from device FILE (default: /dev/mem)
Display usage information and exit
Display the version and exit
More often than not, information contained in the DMI tables is inaccu-
rate, incomplete or simply wrong.
Alan Cox, Jean Delvare
biosdecode(8), mem(4), ownership(8), vpddecode(8)
dmidecode February 2005 DMIDECODE(8)