Windows 8 to have the same system requirements as Windows 7

By on July 12, 2011, 1:02 PM

Did you recently buy a new PC with Windows 7 on it? Are you interested in Windows 8? Are you worried you won't be able to upgrade your operating system? If you answered yes to all three, we have good news for you. Microsoft says Windows 8's system requirements will be the same, or perhaps even lower, than Windows 7's.

Tami Reller, corporate vice president of Microsoft's Windows division, revealed the tidbit to attendees at the company's Worldwide Partner Conference 2011, which took place yesterday in Los Angeles, California. She said any PC capable of running Windows 7 today would be capable of running Windows 8 when it is released.

"The breadth of hardware choice is unique to Windows and is central to how we see Windows evolving. In both of our Windows 8 previews, we talked about continuing on with the important trend that we started with Windows 7, keeping system requirements either flat or reducing them over time," Reller said. "Windows 8 will be able to run on a wide range of machines because it will have the same requirements or lower. And, we've also built intelligence into Windows 8 so that it can adapt to the user experience based on the hardware of the user. So, whether you're upgrading an existing PC, or buying a new one, Windows will adapt to make the most of that hardware."

To refresh your memory, here are Windows 7's system requirements:

  • 1GHz or faster 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor
  • 1GB RAM (32-bit) / 2GB RAM (64-bit)
  • 16GB available disk space (32-bit) / 20GB (64-bit)
  • DirectX 9 graphics processor with WDDM (Windows Display Driver Model) 1.0 or higher driver

Microsoft announced earlier this year that Windows 8 will support Intel, AMD, and ARM architectures. The company gave its first preview of Windows 8 earlier this month, showing off a new touch-oriented UI: icons are replaced by big tiles that can be customized to show live information or launch applications.

Windows 8 could hit the release to manufacturing (RTM) milestone as soon as April 2012. Although a rumor suggests that Windows 8 will arrive on January 7, 2013, we expect that the operating system will ship in time for the 2012 holiday season. In fact, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has said Windows 8 is coming in 2012, but Microsoft quickly claimed this was a misstatement.




User Comments: 22

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gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Forget required/recommended specs: 4GB RAM +

I think buying those crappy 1 GB or 2 GB RAM computers is what made Vista such a bomb.

Guest said:

Sweet. Now I can't wait for the skeptics to claim it will be Vista all over again.

Guest said:

Vista Ultimate w/SP1 made me wish XP a quick death.

Ran great on:

Athlon64 3700+ and 2x512MB

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

+1 gwailo, following the 'minimum specs' mantra is just wrong. I used Vista x64 for couple of years, and frankly if you have a good system it wasn't bad at all, as everyone think it to be. But then again I was running it with 6GB of RAM and at first E6600 C2D, then later on a Q8400.

To get respectable performance + good user experience from any piece of software one should have considerably better system than the minimum required one.

thatguyandrew92 said:

Well, it is MINIMUM for a reason :|

pcnthuziast said:

Will there be a beta like with 7? I used the 7 beta from jump and loved it straight away. Even in beta I thought it trumped XP which I was still using to avoid Vista.

z0k! said:

ensuring arm compatibility in parallel might have been a motivation to keep the requirements to a minimum..

Guest said:

Lol that's stupid article. As an example any machine that could run Vista could sure as hell run WIndows 7 hehehh Any core 2 duo from way back is more than enough for Win7. PC hardware has long overtaken the requirement of everyday software and Windows operating system.

Guest said:

" Well, it is MINIMUM for a reason :| "

MINIMUN, MINIMUN not exactly !

:)

Guest said:

this news make me thinking at windows 8. if it can be less demanding than 7 then this is a true reason to upgrade.

lawfer, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I don't see the news here. It is essentially the same OS, with just a few things added.

Saintnsinner said:

Yeah, I don't see myself running out to upgrade my computers. I don't think there is going to be a compelling enough reason to.

Burty117 Burty117, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

z0k! said:

ensuring arm compatibility in parallel might have been a motivation to keep the requirements to a minimum..

+1

So true

Guest said:

Of course it's the same requirement's, it's Windows 7 SP2 + some useless touch screen applications.

gobbybobby said:

I was about to buy Windows 7 with student deal while at college but then heard that Windows 8 is just around the corner. If they offer "free upgrade to 8 if you buy 7 today" I will get 7

but im just gonna wait for 8

all my 70 Steam games work fine on Vista, I have a mid spec machine (Would be classed as hi spec on vistas release day) that can run the OS and games fine Im told it wouild run better with 7 but I tried win 7 beta and half ma games didn't work correctly, might be different I know but why take the risk and the hassle of changing OS.

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I was about to buy Windows 7 with student deal while at college but then heard that Windows 8 is just around the corner. If they offer "free upgrade to 8 if you buy 7 today" I will get 7

but im just gonna wait for 8

all my 70 Steam games work fine on Vista, I have a mid spec machine (Would be classed as hi spec on vistas release day) that can run the OS and games fine Im told it wouild run better with 7 but I tried win 7 beta and half ma games didn't work correctly, might be different I know but why take the risk and the hassle of changing OS.

I would take that $30 upgrade deal. Windows 8 beta probably won't come out for another six months, and Seven is a much better OS. I know that some of the older Steam games did not work on Seven beta, and worked on Vista for some reason, but I think they solved all the problems. Worst case you can set up a dual boot.

And if you consider that Windows 8 retail won't come out for 18 months, that $30 will pay for itself.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

I would take that $30 upgrade deal. Windows 8 beta probably won't come out for another six months, and Seven is a much better OS. I know that some of the older Steam games did not work on Seven beta, and worked on Vista for some reason, but I think they solved all the problems. Worst case you can set up a dual boot.

And if you consider that Windows 8 retail won't come out for 18 months, that $30 will pay for itself.

There are Windows 7 updates that address application compatibility issues. Exactly which applications these are, or the specific updates numbers, I'm flatly too lazy to research.

However, there's always the "XP Mode" thingy, as long as you update to 7 Pro.

As to the lingering issues about Vista's actual worth, I'll say this; I have a laptop with Vista Home Basic (32 bit). The OS seems to work fine, but there's nothing salient about it, that would cause a rush to upgrade from XP.

That said, "Windows 7 Home Premium", has the full Windows media Center, including DVD playback capability. Vista Home Basic certainly does not.

XP Media Center Edition used to cost $110.00. With Win Home Premium @ $100.00 (as low as $85.00 on sale), whatever version of Vista being discussed, sounds like a footnote.

As far as "waiting for Windows 8", I suppose if you plan on embracing touch screen tech it would be of benefit. But, Win 7 is a fine OS, that will probably be useful for as many years as XP. Incidentally, I have XP boxes that still serve faithfully day in, day out. However, XP Home won't make anybody, "the envy of every kid on the block". If that's your goal, then it's time to move on. Windows 10.......can't wait....

aj_the_kidd said:

lawfer said:

I don't see the news here. It is essentially the same OS, with just a few things added.

That's what i thought. Personally i thought they should have given win7 a 5 year run before the "new" win 8, but that's just my opinion.

Guest said:

why is MS releasing a new operating system so soon after windows 7?

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

why is MS releasing a new operating system so soon after windows 7?
Because......Well, just because....

Guest said:

Because Microsoft is nothing more than another greedy corporation in the world. Seriously, I bet Windows 8 will probably have two or three new features. It's just not worth the price in my opinion. Microsoft today in no longer relevant. Why people continue to buy their overpriced, bloated, bug infested software is beyond me?

Guest said:

MS seems to be emulating Intels architecture updates. Add new features 1 update. Make it optimized/smaller next update.

They reworked the arch in Vista.

They optimized it some in 7, but admitted they had more hair-balls to untangle.

They're optimizing it more in 8, but are also adding Metro interface and ARM support.

Win 9 will hopefully see more optimizations, esp since Metro and ARM support will probably be a bit cludgey out of the gate.

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