Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

Summary: Worried that you'll have to buy a new PC in order to be able to run Windows 8? Don't! Microsoft has said that the Windows 8 system requirements will be the same, or perhaps even lower, than those of Windows 7.

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Worried that you'll have to buy a new PC in order to be able to run Windows 8? Don't! Microsoft has said that the Windows 8 system requirements will be the same, or perhaps even lower, than those of Windows 7.

Speaking at the 2011 Worldwide Partner Conference, Tami Reller, corporate vice president of Microsoft's Windows division, had this to say:

"In both of our Windows 8 previews, we talked about continuing with the important trend that we started with Windows 7, keeping system requirements either flat or reducing them over time. Windows 8 will be able to run on a wide range of machines because it will have the same requirements or lower."

So if Windows 8 has the same system requirements that Windows 7 had, that should mean that Windows 8 will also run on systems that currently have Windows Vista installed on them.

As a reminder, here are the Windows 7 system requirements:

  • 1GHz CPU
  • 1GB RAM (32-bit) or 2GB RAM (64-bit)
  • 16 GB hard disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
  • DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver

How will Windows 8 pull this trick off?

"We've also built intelligence into Windows 8 so that it can adapt to the user experience based on the hardware of the user. So, whether you're upgrading an existing PC, or buying a new one, Windows will adapt to make the most of that hardware."

Good news for those wanting a new OS without having to buy new hardware.

More from Microsoft Partner Conference:

Topics: Windows, Hardware, Microsoft, Operating Systems, Software

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233 comments
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  • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

    "Microsoft has said that the Windows 8 system requirements will be the same, or even lower, than those of Windows 8."

    Haha! That's a fun typo.
    AdamzP
    • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

      @AdamzP
      They did it with Windows 7 over Vista, so not sure why you would disregard that as a possibility. Plus not too many are running systems with 1Ghz processors anymore and if you are its probably getting a little long in the tooth anyway. Not sure people really want to run Windows 8 on an 8 year old PC, the board will probably go bust in a few years anyway.
      OhTheHumanity
      • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

        @OhTheHumanity

        [i]Microsoft has said that the [b]Windows 8[/b] system requirements will be the same, or even lower, than those of [b]Windows 8[/b][/i]

        See the problem? Though it has since been corrected.
        Badgered
      • Tablets!!!

        <i>"Plus not too many are running systems with 1Ghz processors anymore and if you are its probably getting a little long in the tooth anyway."</i><br><br>@OhTheHumanity: Are you sure? What about all the x86 and ARM tablets in the pipeline? If they want to have acceptable performance and a good screen, they'd rather spend the battery life on a better screen. So about 1GHz processors it is.<br><br>If you think about it: if you want Win8 to run on tablets, they'd better not increase system requirements - they should lower them. It is a non-news.
        JonSawyer
      • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

        @OhTheHumanity said "They did it with Windows 7 over Vista"
        No, they didn't. I had hardware that was running Vista on 2 PCs and running XP on a 3rd. All the same hardware. Motherboard was only 3, maybe 4, years old when I went to upgrade the XP computer (tired of BSOD 2,3 times a day). Vista had now been discontinued and so I went with 7. Trying to install it, I was getting more BSOD's on 7 than I was getting on XP, and then found out that Intel didn't make drivers for the mobo for 7, and no, the Vista drivers didn't work, even in compatibility mode. Intel didn't support 7 being installed on that mobo. I bought an unopened Vista disk on an auction site, and that PC is running fine now.
        reziol
      • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

        @reziol is right. Manufacturers refuse to write updated drivers for some older hardware, EVEN if the hardware is more than capable of running the newer OS. They'd rather just sell you their new hardware. That's WHY Linux is BETTER in that respect. Newer versions of Linux actually work with MORE older hardware because of continuing improvements in their drivers.
        lwparrish
      • lwparrish. So that's Linux's selling point? It runs better....

        on old junk hardware? Yes I suppose the community has been able to get code for old hardware drivers or whatever.
        How does that mean anything?
        I work for small to mid sized organizations on shoe string budgets and have yet to run into something that was not supported by the drivers supplied with Windows 7 or drivers for win7 obtainable automatically.
        Anything that doesn't have a driver for win7 is very obviously something that needs replaced or an XP machine left in place to run if needed that bad and upgrading can't be done (even shoestring budgets see the value of buying new hardware when old is holding them back and soaking money out of them with constant repair and attention.) .
        xuniL_z
      • I've Run Into Things with No Win 7 Driver

        @xuniL_z<br><br>Really? You've never run into some odd printer or something that had no Windows 7 driver? I've run into a printer or two that had no driver for Windows 7. I've generally been able to get them to work by using a driver for another model that ran on the same printer language, but the printer settings don't match when you do that.

        Edit: I should clarify that I haven't set up very many peripherals with Windows 7 yet, and I've already run into a printer or two that didn't have a driver for it. We are just preparing for the transition from XP to Windows 7. Fortunately, not that many of the workstations I have to set up use any peripherals besides printers.
        CFWhitman
      • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

        @OhTheHumanity
        Many sectors of our world are not able to upgrade computers. Education, nonprofit, rural. Don't assume that a box long in the tooth is easily replaced.
        cchellez
      • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

        @OhTheHumanity
        "Plus not too many are running systems with 1Ghz processors anymore" . . .NOT TRUE. You are very uninformed and unaware of the global situation in technology . . . . probably because you are living in the USA.
        rob_t1968
      • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

        @OhTheHumanity
        The Windows 7 system requirement listed above will allow the windows 8 to run but it does not guarantee that it can run "smoothly". We will find out only when Windows 8 is installed in the machine.
        ivanjee
      • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

        @lwparrish
        Every time I've tried to switch to Linux on my personal computers I had driver problems. Old/New hardware no difference. Vendors wrote crappy Linux drivers (nVidia) that wouldn't let you take full advantage of the card capabilities. Every time I ended up reinstalling Windows and got everything working. Vendor support is practically non-existent. Community support was poor and generally offered either general advice or arcane procedures (which never worked).
        gitwut
      • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

        @OhTheHumanity Windows 8 will not be just on the x86 chips, but other chips as well, such as ARM. That is why it will keep the 1 Ghz limit.
        hayneiii@...
    • Do more with less?

      @AdamzP
      That is anti-American!
      kd5auq
      • Why?

        @kd5auq : RAM is made in Korea, Singapore and China. SSDs are made in Japan with components from those countries. How would this affect the U.S. economy if it no longer makes the bits?
        cosuna
    • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

      My bet is that it will be exactly the same ;)
      TomClement
    • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

      @AdamzP "...but higher than Linux..."
      james.vandamme
  • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

    This is great news, Win7 runs OK on my nearly 6 year old single core AMD 3000+ 1Gb system (but no comparison to my i7 16Gb beast).

    PS: Sanity check before clicking publish ;) First paragraph, last phrase.
    Jayton
    • RE: Windows 8 will run on all Windows 7 PCs (and Vista PCs too)

      @Jayton

      Yep. I'll be looking forward to put it on my Acer tablet convertible to replace its currently underwhelming touch UI.

      But the real trick will be if you can install it on existing tablets - just think, thousands of Android tablets suddenly becoming useful.
      tonymcs@...
  • We're still really, really sorry for Vista

    Microsoft is definitely playing the Flagellant here. Still paying for jacking up the requirements on Vista (and then not being entirely honest about what would run it well).
    jonfingas