So many times, we have to download application software or device driver software from the internet. But in order to download the correct version for our PC, we must know the currently installed Windows version. For example, if you want to download the latest NVIDIA drivers for your graphics card, there are separate packages for all the different versions of Windows. It could also happen that there is no new packages available for your version of Windows.
Similarly, if you download device drivers from your computer’s manufacturer’s website such as Gigabyte, chances are that you will have to select the version of supported operating system. This is specially true if you are download the firmware for upgrading the system BIOS or UEFI.
There is a quick way to find out the operating system version in your Windows 11 PC, but even faster is to make Windows always display the operating system build and version on the desktop itself.
Here is how you can make the operating system name, edition, version and build appear on the Windows Desktop:
- Press the hotkey Win+R, type regedit and press Enter. This will launch Windows Registry Editor.
- In the Registry Editor, navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop.
- On the right-side panel, find a DWORD value named PaintDesktopVersion and change its value to 1.
- Close Windows Registry Editor and restart Windows. After Windows has restarted, you will be able to see the Windows version printed near the notification area of Windows Desktop.
This text displays the operating system name such as “Windows”, the operating system edition such as “Pro”, the Windows version such as “11” and the build such as “22000”. In the case of older Windows versions, it might display the service packs installed too.
In the future, if you want to make Windows stop printing this information on the desktop, then you can follow the same exact steps with one difference. In the step 3 above, change the value back to 0.