What would your Windows 7 recommended specs be?

Discussion in 'Windows & Other OS Discussion & Support' started by eatingrich, May 13, 2012.

  1. eatingrich

    eatingrich New Member

    I'm running a:

    P4 3ghz CPU
    3GB RAM
    256MB Geforce 7300GT graphics card
    80GB HDD

    on Windows XP, and it feels pretty bloated given how many patches and updates it has.

    I've also got on ongoing issue with the graphics card that only rears its head when I play games (it sort of distorts parts of the screen or makes text go missing or smear across the screen) that hasn't been resolved with the latest drivers or reinstallation.

    I was wondering given that I have a Windows 7 DVD banging about whether Windows 7 would work on my desktop at a satisfactory speed.

    The min specs are all fine or within reason, but obviously min specs only tell half the story.

    I found this thread that sorta half covers a similar topic: http://www.hardwareheaven.com/windows-7-forum/207716-how-low-can-you-go-old-hardware.html

    But it doesn't deal with recommended specs for Windows 7. I've heard dual core is a must, is this the case?
  2. IvanV

    IvanV HH Assassin Guild Member

    It should work fine in principle. :) Single core shouldn't be a problem judging by the info I've got (and I personally ran Vista, which is pretty much the same as far as requirements go, on a single core, 2GHz Athlon64 - worked just fine). RAM is generally a bigger concern, but you've got plenty for normal work, especially since you'll be going for the 32-bit version (I'm 99,9% sure that your P4 is 32-bit only :)).

    On the other hand, you might consider just an XP reinstall - it could be just what the doctor ordered to get your system running it's best. :) Especially since I see some obvious potential problems with your upgrade to 7:
    • motherboard drivers: if this is your mobo, ASUS isn't offering Vista or 7 drivers for it; it could be that the board would work just fine with the drivers that came with Win 7, but also you might have issues with the whole system or some of the integrated components - some research is required;
    • sound card drivers: I don't think that Creative supports Audigy 2 on Vista and 7, although there should be working modded drivers on this very forum that would work :)
    • your video card issues might not go away if they are caused by the card failing.
  3. eatingrich

    eatingrich New Member

    Cheers for the reply, I did wonder the same thing about the graphics card.

    My issue with reinstalling XP is that what I find is when you first reinstall it, it runs super fast. Then you progressively install all the service packs and patches and bit by bit is slows down and feels a lot more bloated.

    I was wondering if Windows 7 would be just a bit more streamline, even if the basic setup requires a more powerful PC than XP does!

    You're right that is my mobo. Thanks for the heads up on that one.
  4. IvanV

    IvanV HH Assassin Guild Member

    XP after just patches shouldn't be that bad, especially if you can find or make an install disc that has the latest service pack integrated. :)

    As for driver support for your system, I did a bit of Googling and it looks like Win7 includes drivers for your chipset. You should also be able to find drivers for the network card. As for the integrated sound card, I'm not sure, but you're probably not using it since you have the Audigy - for Audigy, look at PAX and kX sections in the main Forum page. :)
  5. eatingrich

    eatingrich New Member

    I think I have the network card disabled as I use a wifi dongle for internet access. As you say, I don't use the integrated sound card either.

    Looking good then...I'll have to have a think about it! Pretty much everything on my desktop is backed up onto an external hard drive so it shouldn't be too much of a faff.

    Funnily enough I have a spare desktop sitting next to me with an old 64MB graphics card that I could swap over just to check if the graphics card is squiffy before jumping to Win 7.

    Thanks for your help!
  6. IvanV

    IvanV HH Assassin Guild Member

    You're welcome, good luck. :)
  7. blibbax

    blibbax nahm8

    I sometimes use Win7 x86 on my P4 Northwood (2.26GHZ), 768MB RAM, 160GB PATA system. It's not fantastic, but it works well enough, and your PC's extra RAM and discrete GPU might help quite a bit.
  8. Judas

    Judas Obvious Closet Brony Pony

    your system is well above the excellent running conditions for windows 7....

    actually should see it perform considerably better with windows 7 than with xp
  9. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 9 Grandkids! #10 in the Oven!

    I would download and run the free version of CCleaner and see just how much "junk" is being left on the system.


    I run this religiously on my system and have done so for a few years now. You'll find it recommended highly on several tech sites.

    Run the Cleaner app, then the Registry cleaner. Then run the Cleaner again and go back to the Registry cleaner. On a system that's being done for the first time, I'd recommend to do the backup option just to play it safe. However, I've used it now for so many years without problems, I rarely do the back up anymore.

    You may find you just have way too many broken registry entries/keys that are bogging down the system.

    That's not to say you shouldn't go to Windows 7. But, for your intent and purposes, it may not be necessary.
  10. eatingrich

    eatingrich New Member

    I thought I’d bump this as I have an interesting update.

    I ended up coming across a 64MB AGP card so I tested that on the system. No text smearing across the screen but naturally it runs a heck of a lot slower. The game I’m testing on is Morrowind. When I tested it on a newer (though ironically smaller) game called ‘You must win the game’ it didn’t work because it didn’t have the right hardware acceleration or something.


    I then came across a GeForce 7600GS 512MB AGP card, and installed that. It works fine in and around XP, office etc, just like the GeForce 7300GT 256MB AGP card does, and when I put it in Morrowind I thought it ran fine.

    So I tried ‘You must win the game’ and noticed words missing or being smeared across the screen again. I went back into Morrowind and although it’s not as consistent or as heavy as before, after you play for a minute you notice it again.

    Superficially it looks like it might not be the graphics card, except I pulled the 512MB out of my brother in laws old desktop, which he has passed on to me for spares because the PSU and Mobo have bust! So there is always the possibility that both cards have the same problem!

    What I’m beginning to wonder is actually that it’s something to do with the high-end capabilities of any graphics card that something on my PC cannot handle.
    Whether that is the Operating System or the motherboard I don’t know. But it kinda makes sense to me because everything works fine until I play a high-end 3D game (relative to the time and age of the PC).

    Seeing as I now have a faster graphics card with double the RAM, my mobo RAM is 3GB and I’ve got a 250GB HDD ready to fit in, I’m even more tempted to upgrade to Windows 7. Ideally though I’d just have the graphics working properly when I play games.
    Any further ideas? And thanks for help so far.

    As for CCleaner, I’ve been using that for a few years now – I’m sure it keeps it nice and clean but sadly hasn’t fixed the problems. I also install the latest NVIDIA drivers whenever they’re released.

    I also realise I haven’t provided some screenshots of what Morrowind looks like with the error, I put some on Flickr a while back, check it out on the two shots below:




    My current temptation is to take a punt, back up everything off the hard drive that I want, and then put in the 250GB hard drive and start again with Windows 7.

    UPDATE: One other thing - I was concerned about power supply. A bit of history - I wondered if my GeForce 7300GT was underpowered on my old PSU and that 'caused' the problems, possibly frying the card for gaming. I think my old PSU was a generic 300W one, possibly 400W. So I bought a new PSU, I think it's this one - http://tech-reviews.co.uk/reviews/silver-power-sp-ss500-power-supply-review/ - which I was told would provide more than enough power for my PC. It's 500W I think. Obviously the damage could have been done though. Now I've got a 512MB I'm concerned again if I'd need to bump up to 600W or if the 500W would be fine.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2012
  11. Judas

    Judas Obvious Closet Brony Pony

    considering the power draw on a 7300... i doubt it was being underpowered.. they draw very little.. the agp 8x port power output should be able to more than adequately power it.

    the psu you had prior however could be a culprit... but i've seen where a now sour install of windows xp has presented similare "oddities"....

    I really think if you installed windows 7 on it.... you'd see a nice improvement all around.

    Even though asus doesn't provide drivers for your board..... windows 7 comes with the latest already included.... No additional driver downloads required for it specifically..

    Doesn't hurt to try....
  12. eatingrich

    eatingrich New Member

    Thanks for the advice. Question is whether a previous low power unit did something to the XP installation, the graphics card, or the motherboard.

    I thought I had a Windows 7 disk hanging around but I'm not sure I do now, so if I want one I think I'll have to buy it. I was hoping just to switch cards and have done with it without any cost - it's a second computer I have for certain tasks anyway! :)

    Thanks again.
  13. Judas

    Judas Obvious Closet Brony Pony

    you could go download windows 7....

    technically it's not ilegal to download the copy .. burn it.. and trial it for the first 30 days ... and via loopholes.. use it a little longer just to see how things fair...

    course if you install it.... you'd have to go back and reinstall windows xp if you didn't like it....

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