Microsoft Releases Windows Vista Official Minimum System Requirements

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  • Written on: May 18th, 2006

Today Microsoft released the official minimum system requirements for Windows Vista. To run Vista in its most basic form you will need at least a 20 GB hard drive (not a problem for most people) and 800 MHz processor, and 512 MB of memory. Microsoft calls this the requirements for Vista’s “core” features. As usual, I would not recommend trying to run a Microsoft operating system with the minimum requirements. Vista has other features ranging from improved functionality to some pretty cool eye candy, but you will need some more horsepower to enjoy everything there is to offer.

In case you don’t understand what all of the gigabytes, megabytes, and video bandwidth, Microsoft also launched a beta program you can install on your PC that will ask you what you use your computer for and will tell you if your system is ready. This download is called the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor Beta and is available on Microsoft’s Vista “Get Ready” website. The tool is designed to tell you if your computer can run Vista, and if so, which options you could take advantage of.

One of the biggest surprises is that Windows Vista will run in a 32-bit environment, but you will need to have a seriously beefed up computer to take advantage of Vista’s high-end Ultimate Edition. In fact, Windows Vista will have six different editions, each geared toward the specific user’s needs and desires. This is an except from the Get Ready website that describes each edition and who it is designed for:

Windows Vista Business

Regardless of the size of your organization, Windows Vista Business will help you lower your PC management costs, improve your security, enhance your productivity, and help you stay better connected.

Windows Vista Enterprise

Windows Vista Enterprise is designed to meet the needs of large global organizations with highly complex IT infrastructures. Windows Vista Enterprise can help you lower your IT costs while providing additional layers of protection for your sensitive data.

Windows Vista Home Premium

Whether you choose to use your PC to write e-mail and surf the Internet, for home entertainment, or to track your household expenses, Windows Vista Home Premium delivers a more complete and satisfying computing experience.

Windows Vista Ultimate

If you want all of the best business features, all of the best mobility features, and all of the best home entertainment features that Windows Vista has to offer, Windows Vista Ultimate is the solution for you. With Windows Vista Ultimate you don’t have to compromise.

Windows Vista Home Basic

Windows Vista Home Basic is designed to deliver improved reliability, security, and usability to home PC users who just want to do the basics with their PCs.

It is going to be interesting to watch how computer manufacturers attempt to pigeon hole their customers into the correct operating systems. Microsoft has not released the final market price of each operating system yet, but just as Windows XP Professional costs about $100 more than Windows XP Home Edition, you can bet that Vista Ultimate will be more expensive than Vista Basic.

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