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The Microsoft Windows 7 SKU Strategy Revealed Rev. 5.2
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System Hardware Requirements

Microsoft has finally revealed the system hardware requirements for Windows 7. They are as follows :

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

Additionally, some features provided by certain Windows 7 editions require additional hardware, as outlined here :

  • Internet access
  • Depending on resolution, video playback may require additional memory and advanced graphics hardware (e.g. HD videos)
  • For some Windows Media Center functionality, a TV tuner and additional hardware may be required.
  • Windows Touch and Windows Tablet require specific hardware
  • HomeGroup requires a network and PCs with Windows 7
  • DVD/CD authoring requires a compatible optical drive
  • BitLocker requires TPM 1.2, while BitLocker To Go requires a USB flash drive
  • Music and sound require audio output
  • Windows XP Mode requires an additional 1 GB of RAM, an additional 15 GB of available disk space and a processor capable of hardware virtualization, with Intel VT or AMD-V turned on.

The hardware requirements above apply to all versions of Windows 7. Microsoft has released a separate set of maximum hardware specifications for the Small Notebook PC segment. This limits the following SKUs to certain hardware specifications :

  • Windows 7 Starter
  • Windows 7 Starter for Small Notebook PC
  • Windows 7 Home Basic For Small Notebook PCs (China only)

Please see the next page for the new specification limitations on these small notebook PCs.


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Windows 7 Product Map


Two Primary Versions


Specialized SKUs


Windows 7 In Europe
Windows 7 SKUs In Europe


Concurrent App Limit In Windows 7 Starter
Windows 7 Starter Vs. Windows 7 Home Premium


System Hardware Requirements


Max. Hardware Specs. For Small Notebook PCs
New Hardware Limitations & Comparison


Windows 7 SKU Summary


Easy Upgrades
Developed Market Restrictions
Windows 7 Pricing Details
More Windows 7 Information

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