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Article ID: 919183 - Last Review: March 10, 2014 - Revision: 5.0

For a Windows XP version of this article, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article 314865. For a Windows Server 2003 version of this article, see Knowledge Base article 814617.

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Summary

This article lists the recommended minimum hardware requirements for Windows Vista. This article also lists the operating system requirements to upgrade to Windows Vista.

INTRODUCTION

This article contains information about the recommended minimum hardware requirements for Windows Vista. Hardware requirements vary for the different releases of Windows Vista.

Recommended minimum hardware requirements for Windows Vista

The following list describes the recommended minimum hardware requirements for basic functionality of the different editions of Windows Vista. Actual hardware requirements will vary, depending on system configuration and on the programs and the features that you install. If you install Windows Vista over a network, additional hard disk space may be required.
    Windows Vista Home Basic
    • 800-megahertz (MHz) 32-bit (x86) processor or 800-MHz 64-bit (x64) processor
    • 512 megabytes (MB) of system memory
      Note On system configurations that use system memory as graphics memory, at least 448 MB of system memory must be available to the operating system after some memory is allocated for graphics.
    • DirectX 9-class graphics card
    • 32 MB of graphics memory
    • 20-gigabyte (GB) hard disk that has 15 GB of free hard disk space
    • Internal or external DVD drive
    • Internet access capability
    • Audio output capability

    Windows Vista Home Premium, Windows Vista Business, Windows Vista Enterprise, and Windows Vista Ultimate
    • 1-gigahertz (GHz) 32-bit (x86) processor or 1-GHz 64-bit (x64) processor
    • 1 GB of system memory
    • Windows Aero-capable graphics card

      Note This includes a DirectX 9-class graphics card that supports the following:
      • A WDDM driver
      • Pixel Shader 2.0 in hardware
      • 32 bits per pixel
    • 128 MB of graphics memory (minimum)
    • 40-GB hard disk that has 15 GB of free hard disk space (the 15GB of free space provides room for temporary file storage during the install or upgrade.)
    • Internal or external DVD drive
    • Internet access capability
    • Audio output capability

Note A Windows Aero-capable graphics card is a graphics card that meets the following requirements:
  • Supports a Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) driver
  • Has a DirectX 9-class graphics processor unit (GPU) that supports Pixel Shader 2.0
  • Supports 32 bits per pixel
  • Passes the Windows Aero acceptance test in the Windows Driver Kit (WDK)
For more information about the different editions of Windows Vista, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/windowsvista/editions/default.mspx (http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/windowsvista/editions/default.mspx)

References

Some product features are only available in certain editions of Windows Vista and may require advanced or additional hardware. For more information about these product features visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/windowsvista/footnotes.mspx (http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/windowsvista/footnotes.mspx)

Applies to
  • Windows Vista Ultimate
  • Windows Vista Starter
  • Windows Vista Home Premium
  • Windows Vista Home Basic
  • Windows Vista Enterprise
  • Windows Vista Business 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Business
  • Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Basic 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Enterprise 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Basic N
  • Windows Vista Business N
  • Windows Vista Business N 64-bit Edition
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