Microsoft urges users to 'Get Ready' for Vista

— 3:47 PM on May 18, 2006

Microsoft has started a "Get Ready" initiative that allows users to check their machines for compatibility with the upcoming Windows Vista operating system. A "Windows Vista Capable and Premium Ready PCs" page shows the basic requirements for all versions of Windows Vista, which include an 800 MHz processor, 512 MB of RAM, and a DirectX 9.0-compatible graphics processor. Requirements for "Premium" Vista-ready systems are also listed, including a 1 GHz 32-bit or 64-bit CPU, 1 GB of RAM, a Shader Model 2.0-compliant graphics processor, and a 40 GB hard drive with 15 GB of free space. Microsoft says "Premium" machines will offer "an even better Windows Vista experience," although the company doesn't elaborate on which features this implies aside from Vista's hardware-accelerated Aero graphical user interface.

Along with the Vista system requirements page, Microsoft has also put up a downloadable beta release of Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor. When run, the program inquires, "what would you like to do with Windows Vista?" and lets users pick between options such as "Connect to Corporate or Campus Networks," "Watch and Record TV," and "Work Anywhere." Based on the selection, the Advisor suggests one of Vista's four non-Enterprise flavors and runs a system scan to verify hardware compatibility with the selected features. In the last stage, the Advisor checks for driver support and lists devices that do not yet have Vista-compatible drivers. Once the Advisor is done, users can print and save their compatibility report for future reference.

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