Alex Dubec from the Office Trustworthy Computing Performance team, posted an update on the Office 2010 system requirements for users. One of the major problems faced by the Office 2010 team was to keep application requirements as minimal as possible, so users don’t need to upgrade hardware.
In a nutshell, users that can run Office 2007 will have no problem running Office 2010 on their system. However, there is no guarantee that users running Office 2003 on their system will be able to run Office 2010.
The minimum requirements for Office 2007 & 2010 is a 500Mhz processor with 256MB of RAM, compared to Office 2003, with 233Mhz and 128MB of RAM. CPU and GPU usage hasn’t changed since Office 2007, but Office 2010 does require more disk space than any previous version. The minimum disk space requirement has increase by 0.5GB while other Office 2010 suites have increase by 1.0GB or 1.5GB.
The reasons for the increase is the added features, the new ribbon interface in all of the applications, the different flavours of Office 2010 and conservatism " which means Microsoft will round up to the nearest 0.5GB or 1GB. If an application measured 1.63GB, the minimum requirements would be rounded up to 2GB or 1.99GB would be rounded up to 2.5GB.
Microsoft Office 2010 will still run on a DirectX9.0c graphics processor with 64MB of RAM. Microsoft does recommend a higher system requirement to speed up performance in programs like Excel and PowerPoint, to help render graphs and charts.