Along with the release of the Windows 7 release candidate came new system requirements for Microsoft’s next operating system. This updated set of requirements has been declared final, making them the official system requirements for Windows 7 final. Seeing Microsoft’s rather… Dubious past dealings with minimum system requirements, let’s take a look at Windows 7’s.
The updated requirements have changed little since the Windows 7 beta, and they are almost identical to those of Windows Vista – but when Windows 7 is released, we will be three years down the road. Without further ado:
- 1 GHz processor (32- or 64-bit)
- 1 GB of RAM (32-bit); 2 GB of RAM (64-bit)
- 16 GB of available disk space (32-bit); 20 GB of available disk space (64-bit)
- DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver
Sadly, I don’t own a machine close to these minimum specifications to give you guys a hint as to what that would be like. My AMD Phenom X4 quad-core (4×2.2Ghz), with on-board Radeon HD3200 graphics and 4GB of Geil RAM obviously runs Windows 7 RC (32bit) blazingly fast. My much older, but still relatively powerful Pentium 4 2.8Ghz HT machine with a GeForce 6200 and 2GB of RAM also has no problems whatsoever with the Windows 7RC.
The only machine where it could’ve gotten interesting is my Aspire One netbook, which has the well-known Atom 1.6Ghz processor with an on-board Intel-something video chip and 1.5GB of RAM. Sorry to disappoint some of you, but this netbook has no problems running Windows 7 RC either.
Then again, none of these three machines had any troubles running Windows Vista anyway (I never ran Vista on the quad-core though) so to me, there’s really no surprise there. I have already accepted that my apartment is a magical Windows-problem-free zone inhabited by fairies who keep my machines tidy and clean at night while taking sips out of my Martini bottles.
Anyway, looking back upon the increases in system requirements for Windows, here’s a nice little table I made of all the official minimum specifications as listed by Microsoft.
Minimum system requirements for Windows home-oriented releases as listed by Microsoft.
As you can see, this is the first time that Microsoft has actually managed to keep their minimum requirements flat. However, knowing that Windows 7 actually runs a lot better on the same hardware than Windows Vista, you could technically say that the minimum requirements have been decreased, fairly unique in the software world (Apple managed to do the same with Mac OS X a few times).