Psensor Temperature Monitor

June 21, 2014
psensor003Looking for a simple hardware temperature monitor and graph for Linux? Wondering what the temperature of your CPU is? How about the GPU? What about the motherboard temperature or any other available hardware snesor? Why not monitor CPU usage too?

Try Psensor – a temperature monitor that features a simple GUI, a real-time graph, and useful display customization.

If you are curious about the temperature of any detected (and supported) component of your system, Psensor will let you see it in real time using both a text display and a graph over time.


Psensor running in Linux Mint 17.

Psensor will try to recognize the hardware temperature sensors in your system automatically, so it can only report the temperatures of the hardware it detects.


1. Install lm-sensors

Psensor relies upon the lm-sensors hardware monitor [], which is available in the repositories, so install lm-sensors first using Synaptic or the terminal.

sudo apt-get install lm-sensors

2. Install Psensor

Psensor is also available from the repositories, so install that next using Synaptic or the terminal.

sudo apt-get install psensor

3. Testing (Optional)

For me, Psensor worked flawlessly immediately after installation, but the Psensor web site [] offers some diagnostic suggestions to ensure that hardware is detected properly.

sudo sensors-detect

This performs a meticulous detection of your hardware that will require plenty of yes-no decisions on your part. It runs from a terminal, and the results should look something like this:


Get ready to answer many questions when running sudo sensors-detect.


This shows which hardware monitoring thermometers will be seen by Psensor. It does not require root permissions. The output should look something like this:


The program sensors will show which hardware sensors have been detected on your system. In this case, there are only two. The sensors that appear here will appear in the Psensor GUI.


Running Psensor

Psensor was installed and tested in Linux Mint 17, and it performed brilliantly! From the Linux Mint main menu, choose Administration > Psensor.

From a terminal, type


Either way, the Psensor main window will open and immediately report hardware temperatures for the hardware it detects.


By default, the window is skinny, but it can be resized to accommodate readability and multiple sensors.

Hardware varies. In this test system, there is only one CPU temperature and one GPU temperature to monitor. Your hardware might show more sensors, one, or none at all. Again, the available temperature sensors might vary by the available hardware.


Psensor About dialog.

Customizing Psensor

Besides resizing the Psensor window, the colors, the refresh time, and which sensors appear in the graph can be customized through the preferences. Two preferences are available:

Preferences – Adjust common Psensor settings, such as background color and refresh rate.

Sensor Preferences – Adjust individual settings for each detected sensor.
All settings are saved and resumed between sessions.


Common preferences. Text sensors can be relocated to the top, bottom, or left side of the graph. Units can be chosen between Celsius and Fahrenheit. (Yes, yes, Celcius is a misspelling. Research the Swedish physicist Anders Celsius for details.)


Psensor resized and customized to show the text at the top and display units in Fahrenheit. Only CPU and GPU temperatures are selected for display in the graph.


The background color can be changed to any color you like. By default, the sensors are given technical hardware names. Here, they have been renamed to gpu and cpu for easier reading.


We can even change the colors representing the individual sensors in the graph. In addition, each sensor has a checkbox available under the Graph column. Checked graphs will appear in the graph while unchecked sensors are hidden. Checking and unchecking sensors does not reset the acquired temperature data.


Here, only the CPU temperature graph is displayed for easier reading.


Automatic Startup

Psensor might add itself to your list of startup programs which causes Psensor to run at each system boot. This certainly happened in Linux Mint 17. To prevent Psensor from automatically running at startup, simply remove or disable it from the Startup Programs in the Linux Mint 17 System Settings.



Psensor is quite useful for displaying temperatures, which is something the regular system monitors usually do not handle. The graph is handy for viewing recorded temperatures over a period of time, such as during benchmarks and stress tests, in order to determine if the CPU heatsink is sufficient to cool the processor or to help determine if the system has adequate cooling across various (detected) hardware.

In short, Psensor helps dispel mystery from the question, “How hot is my processor?”

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