Most desktop computers and laptops have only one physical processor; while some server systems and high-end desktops have more. Processors may have multiple cores that act as logical CPUs in Windows. If you plan to upgrade software, install a new game or use resource-intensive applications -- or if you're just plain curious -- knowing the number of processor cores in your PC can help you determine if your system is up to the tasks you want to perform. With Windows 8.1, finding the number of processor cores takes less than a minute or two.
Press "Windows-X," and then click "Device Manager" on the Quick Access Menu.
Double-click "Processors" in the hardware list.
Count the number of devices shown under the Processors category header in the Device Manager window. This is the number of logical processors used by Windows.
If your system has an AMD processor, the number of virtual processors also represents the number of cores in the CPU. If your computer has a multi-core Intel processor, divide the number of virtual processors shown in Device Manager by two, to determine the actual number of cores in the CPU.
If you need to know the number of physical processors installed in your computer, you can find the information in the System window. To access the System window, press the "Windows-Pause" keys simultaneously. In the System window, the number of processors (and their type) appears in the System section in the middle of the window.