Recommended system requirements for Windows 8 Consumer Preview
Windows 8 Consumer Preview reached one million downloads soon after its release, and reports have so far been good, with positive comments from, among others, David Pogue of The New York Times and Matt Warman of The Telegraph, who called it a "huge radical rethinking of Windows" and a "glimpse of a different future," respectively.
Still, it appears that Windows 8 will work on current or even previous generations of computer systems. On that front, Microsoft has offered recommended system specifications for users who may still be on the fence over whether they want to try out the Consumer Preview.
According to a blog entry written by Grant George, a corporate vice president at Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT), they include a processor of 1GHz or faster, a minimum of 1GB of RAM for 32-bit installs or 2GB of RAM for 64-bit, 16GB/20GB of hard disk space (32/64-bit) and a DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver.
According to George, the "vast majority" of Windows 7 touchscreens will perform well with Windows 8, though he specifically listed some systems that were used widely in internal testing. Some models include the HP Elitebook 2760p convertible, Asus EP121 tablet, Dell Inspiron Duo convertible, Lenovo X220T convertible and Samsung Series 7 slate.
Given that the Metro interface is really designed to shine with a touchscreen interface, it will be interesting to see the new "convertible" laptops that will come with Windows 8 installed. As I wrote in last week's editorial, hold off if you're thinking of getting a new laptop.