• 1GHz or faster 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor
• 1GB RAM (32-bit) / 2GB RAM (64-bit)
• 16GB available disk space (32-bit) / 20GB (64-bit)
• DirectX 9 graphics processor with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver
Also Windows 7 will be upgradable with all the former operating systems including Windows 2000, XP, & Vista. To upgrade on XP or Windows 2000 you will have to do a clean install of Windows 7 which means deleting all your files so make sure to backup your important documents using a storage device. On Windows Vista you will be able to do an in place upgrade which means you will not have to completely wipe your harddrive so Windows Vista users should be grateful for that.
The next big thing with Windows 7 is what editions are there and how much will the cost. As of now there is three editions Home Premium, Professional and Ultimate. The differences between the 3 are very few. The only main difference that I could see be important is premium does not come with XP mode. For a full list of differences and to see which one is right for you here is a list from microsoft. Now as far as cost goes right now is the best time to pick up Windows 7. On the internet right now Microsoft has all the Upgrade Pre Orders on sale for just 1 more day, so you better hurry. The two on sale are the Wndows 7 Professional Upgrade for $100 and the Windows 7 Premium Upgrade for $50. After tommorow though here is what the new prices will look like.
- Windows 7 Premium Upgrade - $120
- Windows 7 Premium Full - $200
- Windows 7 Professional Upgrade - $200
- Windows 7 Proffessional Full - $300
- Windows 7 Ultimate Upgrade - $219
- Windows 7 Ultimate Full - $320
Also here are some quick facts to answer some of your questions:
• All versions of Windows 7 will ship with both a 32 bit & 64 bit disk.
• Windows 7 will feature XP Virtualization which will allow your XP only apps to run on Windows 7
• To see if your processor can handle 64 bit mode or Hardware Virtualization download and run GRC's SecurAble
• You can only install windows 7 on one machine
Now the final debate why should I upgrade to Windows 7 when Windows XP or Vista works just fine for me now? Well to help you out Microsoft has made a list of new and improved features in Windows 7 to make your operating system better and run more smoothly.
• Improved GUI and desktop navigation
• Windows Search
• Internet Explorer 8
• Windows Media Center
• HomeGroup (Windows 7-specific networking)
• 32-bit and 64-bit editions provided in retail/upgrade versions
• Windows Aero desktop (with supported graphics cards and drivers)
• Improved wireless networking
• Improved network management for mixed Windows 7/Vista/XP networks
• Improved audio and video codec support
• Improved digital TV support
• Windows Backup for both files and system image
• Devices and Printers management interface
• Device Stage enhanced driver support for multifunction devices
Overall I really think people will be happy with Windows 7 when it comes out on October 22nd. Microsoft has been testing windows 7 with the beta last year and the RC1 since spring and they have really ironed out all the bugs so do not expect a giant disaster the first time using it like Windows Vista. Microsoft has really made a great operating system that I believe is worth upgrading to.