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How to check your PC’s framerate, or FPS, when playing video games

Frames per second, or FPS, is the clearest measure of how well your computer can run a video game. It’s not difficult to tell if your PC is having trouble with or breezing through whatever game you’re playing, but even if you develop a good instinct and have an ability to make a rough estimate on how many FPS your rig is churning out, you probably won’t be able to nail the exact number. Those chances are diminished significantly when you consider that framerates fluctuate constantly depending on what you’re doing in-game.

Why would you want to know how many FPS your system can kick out when you’re playing World of Warcraft of Call of Duty: Ghosts? Frankly, some just like to brag. Attaining triple digits in a game as demanding as a new CoD title is something to brag about. However, the more pragmatic among you out there might want to know what your PC is capable in terms of FPS because that can help you determine whether your system is up to snuff or whether an upgrade is in order. We’re here to show you how to pull it off.

Related: Best free first person shooters, best free MMORPGs.

How to check your PC’s FPS when playing video games

For this purpose, you’ll be using a program called Fraps. Fraps is free, easy to use, and once you turn it on, it quietly sits in your taskbar while it does your bidding. The program is also tiny, with the download weighing in at a measly 2.2MB, smaller than most MP3 files. You can snag it by clicking here.

Once installed, Fraps will automatically sneak into your taskbar. If you want to mess with any of its settings, you’re free to by right-clicking on the Fraps icon in your taskbar (symbolized by a monitor and a yellow 99).

Otherwise, just game on! Any games you play from here on out will have a yellow number displayed in the corner of your screen whenever you start playing. That number represents your system’s FPS.

Once you exit the game, the Fraps FPS counter can behave erratically. Though it usually doesn’t appear in Windows, at times it will pop up. If you want to get rid of it while not playing a game, just close Fraps from the taskbar. Start it up again when you’re about to head into another gaming session.

That’s all there is to it. Despite Fraps’ popularity, we wonder whether you use Fraps or another program. Feel free to share in the comments below.

Image credit: www.teamliquid.net