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Monitor the CPU temperature of your Raspberry Pi

Temperature icon desktop Raspberry Pi

In this tutorial you’ll learn how you can easily and continuously monitor the temperature of the CPU of your Raspberry Pi. After completed this tutorial, you will have installed a temperature icon on your Pi’s desktop.

Temperature icon Raspberry Pi

What you’ll need for this tutorial

For this tutorial, you need to have your Raspberry Pi running on the latest version of Raspbian.

How to add the temperature icon to your desktop

Right click on the task bar on the top of your screen and select “Add / Remove Panel Items”

 

A Window called “Panel Preferences” will apppear. Select the tab “Panel Applets”. Click on the “Add” button to open a new pop-up window. You should see a list of all available plugins

Among the items in the list, Select “CPU Temperature Monitor” and click the “Add” button.

That’s it, the temperature of the CPU should appear in the right top corner of your desktop.

An alternative temperature icon

Below you can see how to select an alternative plugin which also indicates the CPU temperature. Up to you to choose the one you prefer.

 

Change the position of the temperature icon

It’s possible to arrange the positions of the icons on your Task Bar. To do this you have to select the icon and click one or several times on the “Up” button to move the icon to left.

Setting the preferences of the temperature icon

It’s also possible to change the preferences from the temperature plugins. To do this you have to select the icon and click on the “Preferences” button.

 

Getting the CPU temperature from your Pi with the Terminal window

In the case you just want to measure the CPU sporadically, you can use following command in a Terminal Window :

vcgencmd measure_temp

Great! Now you are able to easily follow up your CPU temperature and take action if necessary!

What’s a good maximum temperature of the CPU of the Raspberry Pi 4 to target?

Just keep in mind that for a Raspberry Pi 4 as soon as the CPU temperature reaches 80°C or more, the CPU will start to throttle. You’ll definitely lose performance but the throttling will avoid overheating of the CPU. So it’s recommended to keep the CPU temperature below 80°C.

It’s possible to keep the CPU temperature below 80°C and prevent CPU performance losses, by placing heatsinks (see our tutorial), by using a well ventilated enclosure (visit our shop), or by installing a fan (see our tutorial).

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