Microsoft confirms final Windows 7 system requirements

When Microsoft released the official beta for Windows 7 a while back, it also published a set of system requirements. These were a general overview, and it seems that they have been updated to match the Windows 7 RC recently made available.

Here's the list of initial system requirements Microsoft made available:

* 1GHz processor (32- or 64-bit)
* 1GB of RAM
* 16 GB of available disk space
* Support for DirectX 9 graphics with 128MB of memory (for the Aero interface)

And here, you will find the updated and final list of requirements:

* 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 avaiable disk space (64-bit)
* DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver

According to ZDNet, however, "If you are planning to run Windows XP Mode along with Windows 7, Microsoft is recommending a PC with a minimum of 2GB of memory and 15 GB of additional disk space." Microsoft stated, "In addition, Windows Virtual PC requires a PC with Intel-VT or AMD-V enabled in the CPU, as it takes advantage of the latest advancements in hardware virtualization."

If you're interested in comparing, here is the list of final specifications for Windows Vista:

* 1 GHz processor (32- or 64-bit)
* 512 MB of RAM (for Home Basic); 1 GB of RAM for all other versions
* 15 GB of available disk space
* Support for DirectX 9 graphics and 32 MB of graphics memory (for Home Basic); 128 MB of graphics memory plus WDDM support for all other versions

These specifications are not specific to any particular SKU, and again, are final. Thoughts?

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Don't tell me your processor is slower than 1GHz and you don't have the RAM or disk space. As far as speed goes betas of Windows 7 have been benchmarked all over the place and show it to be faster than XP.

Oh and the Crysis thing is really tired.

saturnslullaby said,

... how do you define "Power User?" -- With Photoshop??!!

For me, a power user is a person who knows his or her way around the system. You know, basic stuff, like removing useless dependencies in services, disabling dynamic link libraries, knowing what exactly starts with his/her system and having full control over it, removing Viruses manually, going without a virus for half a year at least while connected to the internet, etc.

I am not sure what you mean by Photoshop - I have Photoshop, Illustrator, and Bridge CS3 installed on my System. These programs are performance and memory hogs to put it lightly - if you have enough layers in a 600DPi image - Photoshop will be using like 1GB minimum. 170MB for Windows XP + 1GB + 600MB FireFox Open - the RAM usage adds up quickly, now if it wasn't XP, add another 600MB to the equation - scratch disks would be used more often with 7, hindering performance. Now, what I mean by PS running slow is actually different, I mean that it opens up a new document slower.

@m.keeley - actually it is two cloacked at 2400 Mhz.

Udedenkz said,
Windows XP64 has actually been released in 2005.
Service Pack 3 for XP32 has been released in like 2008, I think.

Using 185.xx drivers, and April Realtek Drivers, etc.

This Stone Age can run GTAIV and Crysis, and does not have that much DRM.


Now describe the "DRM" that Vista does have.

Udedenkz said,
It requires a more powerful CPU than XP.
It requires more RAM than XP.
It requires more Hard Drive Space than XP / Crysis.
I do not have a SINGLE application that requires Vista/7.
My Hardware can't handle DirectX10 Gaming.
I get better performance for GUI, Search Speed, Gaming Speed, Photoshop Speed in XP.

Microsoft seriously fails to appealing to Power Users who do not care about Glitter and fancy Aero effects.


In what way?
1. CPU requirements - A P4 (heck, even a P-III) can run Windows 7 (or Vista 32-bit) for basic tasks. This is no more than XP32 requires.

2. RAM requirements - You don't have 512 MB of RAM? (That's the *recommended* minimum for XP, and the bare-minimum for Vista or 7 32-bit.) I have an old Gateway laptop that came with that little (upgradable to 1 GB). Given a USB thumb drive, I could upgrade the same laptop to Vista (or 7, for that matter); it lacks a DVD drive.

3. Graphics requirements: For Aero, you need DX 9c; this is only an issue for portables (laptops, notebooks, and netbooks) as desktops (even those with only PCI slots available) can upgrade to DX10. If you don't game, even that's a non-issue.

4. Drive space requirements - again, not really an issue (except for portables, and depending on the age of the laptop/note/netbook, rather easily fixable, as large hard drives for the portable crowd are dropping in price; see Western Digital's Scorpio line).

5. None of my own applications requires either Vista or 7, either (same applies to my hardware). XP supports all my applications and hardware; some of it is supported even in Windows 2000 Professional. I upgraded (first to Vista, and now to 7) for reasons of *increased stability*; not looks/appearance.

Ok stick with XP. Why do you feel the need to tell everyone you like XP more and to try to get everyone else to stay on an ancient OS?

PGHammer said,
*Snip*

I am a performance freak, the less something requires, the more power there is to other components.

* Pentium 233-megahertz (MHz) processor or faster (300 MHz is recommended)
* At least 64 megabytes (MB) of RAM (128 MB is recommended)
* At least 1.5 gigabytes (GB) of available space on the hard disk
* CD-ROM or DVD-ROM drive
* Keyboard and a Microsoft Mouse or some other compatible pointing device
* Video adapter and monitor with Super VGA (800 x 600)or higher resolution
* Sound card
* Speakers or headphones

That is the XP Minimum System Requirements.

Udedenkz said,

Windows XP64 has actually been released in 2005.
Service Pack 3 for XP32 has been released in like 2008, I think.

Using 185.xx drivers, and April Realtek Drivers, etc.

This Stone Age can run GTAIV and Crysis, and does not have that much DRM.


Don't start with the DRM bull****. Windows Vista/7 support DRM media like HD-DVD, Blu-ray and so on, Linux and OS X (can't do that, yet..).

Enough of this crap.

Windows 7 has a faster GUI, why? Because it's done by the graphics card, and not the CPU.

Search speed is faster than XP.

Gaming speed is onpar with XP.

Photoshop runs brilliantly here!

Udedenkz said,
It requires a more powerful CPU than XP.
It requires more RAM than XP.
It requires more Hard Drive Space than XP / Crysis.
I do not have a SINGLE application that requires Vista/7.
My Hardware can't handle DirectX10 Gaming.
I get better performance for GUI, Search Speed, Gaming Speed, Photoshop Speed in XP.

Microsoft seriously fails to appealing to Power Users who do not care about Glitter and fancy Aero effects.

remember most people are NOT power users, they hardy know to to use eBay let again anything else

m.keeley said,
I presume it will be at least partly because there's an overhead when running 32bit apps.


That's not correct, the reason why 64bit needs more RAM is because it's code base is bigger.

True to a point but, unless something has changed that I've not read about/forgotten, in order to run 32 bit code it goes through WoW 64 (Windows on Windows not World of Warcraft!) which must have an memory overhead.

I think most of the complaints about harddrive requirements are from older users who still have that voice in their mind from back when they were running DOS and playing Hugo's House of Horrors. Much like people who talk about the 'good old days' in any topic, they're usually deluding themselves into forgetting key downsides that MOTIVATED developers to progress into what we have today (just like people who were children in the 50s had no idea what the world was actually like back then, because they were children and living in the family bubble--and they never figure out that it's the family bubble they long for, and not the 50s themselves).

a little advice here for a potential 7 user currently on Vista Ultimate 32 bit.

( my general current rig specs )
EVGA sli 590 nforce SLI AM2 platform
4 gigs of pc2 6400 ram @ 800 mhz
AMD 6000+ duel core @3.01 ghz
2 striped Raptors for system drive
2 mirrored WD's for data
3 19 nch widescreens.. ( not running in SLi mode ) WDDM made me buy identical cards
2 x G-force 8500 GT's ( not a gamer.. just a web developer.. light graphics )

sorry if I am out of line posting this here.. but would like to know from the people in the know.. :)

thanks so much in advance!! :)


would you guys and gals say I have a win 7 machine ready hardware wise?

Any help in adavance is much appreciated...

greatestfall said,
this post screams MY E-PEEN STROKE IT PLZ.

but, if it is not that kind of post, I think 7 will run just fine on your system.



no.. seriously.. it really was a very honest question.. It is my work rig, and was not really trying to get any kind of "satisfaction" from any kind of reply like your own.. but I thought it was funny.. and you still managed to answer my question in the long run.. thank you

Atlonite said,
with that you'll probably run win7 rather well infact probably better than vista



thanks for your reply... I wonder why a latter OS could run more effentiently than an older OS "Vista" ?

Ambroos said,
Interesting. Good that they actually state DirectX9 with WDDM 1.0 or higher as a requirement, now all vendors will at least be forced to deliver pc's that are Aero capable.

Good! Some dumbass at Lenovo/IBM installed Vista Basic on my gf's hideously underpowered PC (it meets min. requirements) but it was PAINFULLY slow. Hapilly humming along with XP now !

Plus the damn UAC kicked me out during remote assistance, in the middle of virus removal.

to be able to run both 64bit and 32bit apps without the need of using a virtual machine running a 32bit os (wow64 is like virtual machine for 32bit apps) as well as a host of other virtualised parts of the os for security and performace reasons

there are lies, damn lies, and benchmarks. system requirement as stated by msfudd rank higher than benchmarks ...

Forum users not understanding what "system requirements" mean yet bitching about some vague "HDD space" which they cannot even count properly (hard links %â„–:â„–%:)? Nothing new...

Hard Drives are Very cheap these days so there is no reason not to buy a larger and faster one, xp is very old but there is a point to how fast it will operate, xp was made in an age where hardware was better but not alot of memory but hardware is better and there is only so much you can do to improve xp then you need to move on, if there are certain apps that don't work on vista then stick to xp but if your software/hardware can handle vista/windows 7 then use that, and as others have said you are not being forced to upgrade/downgrade.

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