Windows 10 System Requirements

Windows 11 may be on the horizon but many of us are going to be with Windows 10 for a good while yet.

If you need to install Windows 10 on a new PC, or maybe you are trying to repurpose that old machine you have stored in the garage for the past couple of years, then you need to make sure it is capable of running Microsoft’s Windows 10 before attempting to install it and get it up and running.

Below you are going to find all the information you need as to whether your trusty old PC is up to scratch. Windows 10 is going to be around with us until 2025 at least so there is no point in holding off until Windows 11. PLus if you have Windows 10 installed you will be entitled to a free upgrade to WIndows 11 for the first year of it’s life, so it is definitely worth getting it up and running smoothly sooner rather than later.

If you need to see the system requirements for WIndows 11, then you can check up with PC Guide at that link also.

System requirements for installing Windows 10

These are the basic requirements for installing Windows 10 on a PC. If your device does not meet these requirements, you may not have as great an experience with Windows 10 and might want to consider purchasing a new PC.
Processor:
1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster processor or System on a Chip (SoC)
RAM:
1 gigabyte (GB) for 32-bit or 2 GB for 64-bit
HDD:
16 GB for 32-bit OS 32 GB for 64-bit OS
GPU:
DirectX 9 or later with WDDM 1.0 driver
Display:
800×600
Internet Connection:
Internet connectivity is necessary to perform updates and to download and take advantage of some features. Windows 10 Pro in S mode, Windows 10 Pro Education in S mode, Windows 10 Education in S mode and Windows 10 Enterprise in S mode require an internet connection during the initial device setup (Out of Box Experience or OOBE), as well as either a Microsoft account (MSA) or Azure Activity Directory (AAD) account. Switching a device out of Windows 10 in S mode also requires internet connectivity. Learn more about S mode here.
There may be additional requirements over time for updates, as well as requirements to turn on specific features within the OS.

Feature-specific requirements for Windows 10

Microsft’s Windows 10 page also tells us we need to bear the following system requirements in mind in order for some features to work correctly.

In addition to the requirements above that are needed to run Windows, some features have additional requirements. In some cases, features included with updated versions of Windows 10 will be best experienced with newer processors. For specific hardware support please refer to your Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM). Below are some additional details regarding requirements for key features:

  • BitLocker Drive Encryption (available with Windows 10 Pro or Windows 10 Enterprise only) requires a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) 1.2 or higher and Trusted Computing Group (TCG)-compliant BIOS or UEFI. BitLocker can be used on devices without TPM, but you will need to save a startup key on a removable device such as a USB flash drive. TPM 2.0 and InstantGo support is required when you want to automatically encrypt the local drive when joining a device to Azure Active Directory (AAD). Check with your PC manufacturer to confirm if your device supports the correct TPM version and InstantGo for the scenario you want to enable.
  • BitLocker To Go requires a USB flash drive (available in Windows 10 Pro and Windows 10 Enterprise only).
  • Client Hyper-V requires a 64-bit system with second level address translation (SLAT) capabilities and additional 2 GB of RAM (available in Windows 10 Pro and Windows 10 Enterprise only).
  • Cortana is only currently available on Windows 10 for the United States, United Kingdom, China, France, Italy, Germany, Brazil, Mexico, Japan, Canada, Spain, Australia and India.
  • Microsoft account is required for some features.
  • Miracast requires a display adapter which supports Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) 1.3, and a Wi-Fi adapter that supports Wi-Fi Direct.
  • Movies & TV application is not available in all regions. For the most up-to-date list of regions, please go to the Movies & TV information page.
  • Secure boot requires firmware that supports UEFI v2.3.1 Errata B and has the Microsoft Windows Certification Authority in the UEFI signature database.
  • Skype is available only in select countries and regions. Calling to select countries and regions only. Excludes special, premium and non-geographic numbers. For details, visit the Office FAQ page.
  • Snap: The number of applications that can be snapped will depend upon the minimum resolution for the application with a limit of two applications in Tablet mode and four applications in Desktop mode.
  • Speech recognition will vary by device microphone. For a better speech experience, you will need a:
    • High fidelity microphone array
    • Hardware driver with microphone array geometry exposed
  • Tablet mode is available on tablets and 2-in-1s with GPIO indicators or those that have a laptop and slate indicator will be able to be configured to enter “tablet mode” automatically.
  • Touch: To use touch, you need a tablet or a monitor that supports multi-touch.
  • Two-factor authentication requires the use of a PIN, Biometric (finger print reader or illuminated infrared camera), or a phone with Wi-Fi or Bluetooth capabilities.
  • Windows Hello requires a camera configured for near infrared (IR) imaging or fingerprint reader for biometric authentication. Devices without biometric sensors can use Windows Hello with a PIN or a portable Microsoft compatible security key.
  • Xbox application requires an Xbox Live account, which is not available in all regions. For the most up-to-date list of regions, please go to Xbox Live Countries and Regions website.
  • Wi-Fi Direct Printing requires a Wi-Fi adapter that supports Wi-Fi Direct and a device that supports Wi-Fi Direct Printing.

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