Chapter 1: Getting Started with Windows Vista
• A Windows Vista Capable computer will deliver the core experience. To be
Windows Vista Capable, a computer must have an 800 MHz or faster proces-
sor, 512 MB of RAM, a graphics processor that is DirectX 9-capable, and a CD-
ROM drive. DirectX is a technology for enhancing a computer’s multimedia
capabilities, allowing more realistic 3D graphics and more immersive sound.
• A Windows Vista Premium Ready computer will deliver an enhanced experi-
ence. To be Windows Vista Premium Ready, a computer must have a 1 GHz or
faster processor, 1 GB of RAM, an enhanced graphics processor with at least 128
MB of RAM that supports DirectX 9 graphics with a Windows Display Driver
Model (WDDM) driver, at least a 40 GB hard drive with 15 GB of free space, a
DVD-ROM drive, a sound card with audio outputs, and either a modem or a
network card for connecting to the Internet.
Some computers have graphics processors that share memory with the
operating system. With shared memory, no additional graphics mem-
ory is required beyond the 1 GB of RAM.
Thanks to Microsoft’s like-named logo programs with computer manufacturers,
you’ll find new computers have the Windows Vista Capable logo, the Windows
Vista Premium Ready logo, or both. If your computer doesn’t have one of these
logos, it doesn’t mean Windows Vista won’t run on your computer. You can still
install Windows Vista as long as your computer meets the Windows Vista Capable
Other features of Windows Vista may require additional hardware. For example, to
watch or record live TV, your computer needs a tuner.
Navigating Windows Vista Editions
Continuing the trend started with Windows XP, Windows Vista combines the previ-
ously separate home and business products into a single product family. Unlike Win-
dows XP, Windows Vista editions aren’t organized by hardware type or processor
architecture. Instead, Windows Vista comes in several distinctly different editions,
• Home Basic
• Home Premium