Microsoft has detailed the hardware recommendations for running the Windows 8 Consumer Preview for anyone wanting to download it.
Within a day
of Microsoft releasing the Windows 8 Consumer Preview to the general public,
the company reported that more than 1 million people had downloaded the beta of
the upcoming operating system.
considering whether to load up the Consumer Preview, Microsoft has now offered
up a list of system recommendations for running the software. They include a
device with a 1GHz (or faster) processor, 1GB RAM (32-bit) or 2GB RAM (64-bit),
16GB available hard-disk space (32-bit) or 20GB (64-bit), and a DirectX 9
graphics device with WDDM 1.0 (Windows Display Driver Model 1.0) or higher
Windows 8 has
been engineered to work equally well on tablets as desktops and laptops; the
Metro-style start screen (Metro being the name for Microsofts new design
aesthetic, which increasingly unites products from Windows 8 to Windows Phone)
is composed of a set of colorful (and touchable) tiles linked to applications,
with the old-style desktop interface accessible via a single click or finger tap.
In theory, the evolution will allow Microsoft to hold onto the PC OS market
while expanding in a major way into the mobile segment.
gets you going with Windows 8 such that it is functionally equivalent to
Windows 7, Grant George, Microsofts corporate vice president of Windows Test,
wrote in a Feb. 29 posting on the official Building
blog, and as we have talked about previously, you should see measurable
improvements in performance in a number of dimensions with a system at this
There are some
Windows 8-specific twists, however. For one thing, any Metro-style apps require
a minimum 1,024 by 768 screen resolution (with 1,366 by 768 for the snap
feature), meaning that any app launched with less than that resolution will
receive an error message in return. We chose to allow Windows 8 to install
even when a system doesnt meet this requirement because, even without the
Metro style applications, your Windows 7 workloads on these PCs will improve,
George wrote, and you can benefit from all the other features of Windows 8,
including enhancements to the desktop.
In terms of
virtualization, he also advised that IT pros run Windows 8 on hardware. The
most important reason is access to the rich experience powered by accelerated
graphics, and the fast and fluid operation that youll experience when running
In its own
internal testing, Microsoft used devices, including the Asus EP121 tablet, Dell
Inspiron Duo convertible, Lenovo x220t convertible and Samsung Series 7 slate.
Preview can be found in a special
on Microsofts Website. The betas ISO files (for those who wish to
install it on another partition or virtual machine) are also available
Microsoft has opened the Windows Store, making a variety of Metro-style apps
available to download and try at no cost.
executives have cautioned about bugs still present in the software. It
represents a work in progress, and some things will change before the final
release, Kent Walter, a member of the Windows Team, wrote in a Feb. 29 posting
. One of the great things about widely releasing a preview
like this is that it gives us a chance to get a lot of feedback through
telemetry, forums and blog posts on where we can smooth out some of the rough
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