Join David Rivers for an in-depth discussion in this video System requirements, part of Migrating from Windows 7 to Windows 8.
Most people considering a migration from Windows 7 to Windows 8 will likely be installing Windows 8 on the same computer that's currently running Windows 7. It could be side by side with Windows 7, or Windows 8 might totally replace Windows 7. Whatever the case may be, you'll want to ensure the computer is capable of running Windows 8. So, we're going to explore system requirements for running Windows 8. We'll also look at some additional requirements and ways to find out if your computer is compatible, but let's begin with the system requirements and your processor.
It needs to be quite quick, at least a GHz, preferably faster to run efficiently. And it needs to support three features, PAE, NX, and SSE2. These three features of your processor are necessary for using expanded memory, and protecting your computer from malicious software and other security issues. Also you going to need some memory, Random Access Memory, sometimes called virtual memory. If you're on a 32 bit machine, you'll need a GB minimum, 2 GB if you are on a 62 bit system.
I'll show you in a moment how to determine whether your computer is using a 32 bit or 64 bit processor. You're also going to need some space on your hard drive. You'll need at least 16 GB on a 32-bit system, and 20 GB on a 64-bit system. Again, these are minimums. You'll need more space if you plan on installing any other software, or even creating and storing files on that hard drive. And there are some special effects in Windows 8. You'll need a decent graphics card, Microsoft DirectX 9 with WDDM driver in fact.
Without that, you won't be able to see the special effects in Windows 8. In fact, you might not be able to see anything at all. Alright, let's flip over to our Windows 7 machine and take a look at our system information to see if it's compatible with Windows 8. First thing we'll do is go down to the Start button, and in the search field, start to type the word, system. Sys should be enough, and in the programs group, somewhere in here, you'll find system information. Mine happens to be at the top. That's what we want to click, system information, and by default, you'll see system summary is highlighted.
Now, over here on the right, we have some important information. For example, you can see what version of Windows you're currently running. Mine is Windows 7 Professional. A little further down, you're going to see your system manufacturer and model. But more importantly, the system type. If you see x86 in there anywhere, odds are every good that you're running a 32-bit system. Now, I know it's not always the case, but typically it will indicate a 32-bit processor. Now, if you really need to be sure, you can contact your manufacturer, or at least the documentation provided by your manufacturer.
A little further down, some other information that's kind of important to us if we're considering a migration to Windows 8, and that's the virtual memory. There is physical memory, but a little further down is where I am going to find out what my random access or virtual memory is. Looks like 2 GB here which is plenty to run Windows 8. Alright, there's another Option for getting our system requirements as well. Let's just close up this window and launch our browser. Mine's Internet Explorer. We'll go to the microsoft.com homepage.
Now, although this homepage changes regularly, and yours is going to look different than mine, you should be able to find the search field here somewhere. And clicking in there is going to allow us to type in the following: upgrade, not advisor assistant and pressEenter on your keyboard. Now, you should find one matching result that will give us what we want here at the top, upgrade to Windows 8. You can see talks about the upgrade assistant inside there. I'm going to give it a click, and from here, you'll notice a button to download something called the upgrade assistant.
Now, if you're wondering what it is, you can actually scroll down here to read a little bit about what the upgrade assistant will actually do for you. It does scan your hardware, your apps, any devices that are connected as well. And as you can see here, some of those system requirements we just talked about are available in this information as well. You get a compatibility report. It will generally work with the same apps and devices that you are using in your Window 7 environment, but in some cases a product might need an update and you will get that information as well. And a little further down is were you can check out to see if your PC is ready to upgrade.
There is also system requirements we've been talking about, also some information about the upgrade assistant touch. Can I upgrade from a 32 bit version to a 64 bit version on Windows 8, that's something that you might be thinking about doing, you can find out by clicking this link, if it's possible. Alright. So, a lot of information here, but really what we want to do is get the Upgrade Assistant and as we scroll back to the top you can see a button to Download the Upgrade Assistant. Now, if you want to go ahead and do this now you can. Click the button and click Run, and you'll be downloading the assistant, which we're going to actually look at in chapter two. So, I'm going to save that for then, but you can go ahead and run that if you wanted to.
Alright, I'm going to close this up, and we're going to return to our bullet points here, because there are some additional requirements that you might want to consider if you're going to be going to Windows 8. For example, Windows 8 is what we call touch-compatible, and that means, you don't need a mouse, not even a keyboard. If you have a tablet or a monitor that supports Multitouch, you're good to go. So, if you want to take advantage of the touch functionality, you'll need either or both of those options.
Also, there are some special effects I mentioned earlier. One of them's called snap. It allows you to snap windows into sections of your screen. It's a great way to stay organized. Notice what we need for a screen resolution here. And, also if you want to take advantage of the Windows store, where you can download apps and so on of course, you're going to need an internet connection. But also the screen resolution on your monitor needs to be set to at least 1024 by 768. Also you might consider a Microsoft account, it's free, but it does give you access to all kinds of additional features.
I think about SkyDrive or cloud computing for example. With your Microsoft account, you'll be able to store files be in your SkyDrive folder, which is free storage space in the cloud, allowing you to access your files from anywhere on any device. So, think about signing up with a Microsoft account if you don't already have one, like a Hotmail account for example. That allows you to log into Windows and have access to these special features. So, that's the first step in migrating from Windows 7 to Windows 8. If you find that your computer is compatible, it's time to consider a migration path, and we'll talk about that next.
- Determining the best migration path
- Backing up your files
- Storing files with Easy Transfer
- Installing Windows on a new partition
- Restoring files and settings with Easy Transfer
- Connecting hardware devices