Windows 8.1 system requirements and new features

Today is the day of the official release of Windows 8.1, you would have probably noticed that - the web is abuzz with all kinds of information related to the new OS. All Windows 8 users will be able to install it via the the built-in Store app. That's a very convenient way of distribution, definitely. If you are curious what the system requirements are for Windows 8.1, read this article. As a bonus, I'll post for you links to the evaluation versions of Windows 8.1 RTM.


Windows 8.1 system requirements are as follows:

  • Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster with support for PAE, NX, and SSE2 (more info)
  • RAM: 1 gigabyte (GB) (32-bit) or 2 GB (64-bit)
  • Hard disk space: 16 GB (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
  • Graphics card: Microsoft DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM driver
Additional requirements to use certain features:
  • To use touch, you need a tablet or a monitor that supports multitouch (more info)
  • To access the Windows Store and to download, run, and snap apps, you need an active Internet connection and a screen resolution of at least 1024 x 768
  • Microsoft account required for some features such as many of the Store apps, SkyDrive etc
  • Internet access (ISP fees might apply)
  • Secure boot requires firmware that supports UEFI v2.3.1 Errata B and has the Microsoft Windows Certification Authority in the UEFI signature database
  • Some games and programs might require a graphics card compatible with DirectX 10 or higher for optimal performance
  • Watching DVDs requires separate playback software (more info)
  • Windows Media Center license sold separately (more info)
  • BitLocker To Go requires a USB flash drive (Windows 8.1 Pro only)
  • BitLocker requires either Trusted Platform Module (TPM) 1.2 or a USB flash drive (Windows 8.1 Pro only)
  • Client Hyper-V requires a 64-bit system with second level address translation (SLAT) capabilities and additional 2 GB of RAM (Windows 8.1 Pro only)
  • A TV tuner is required to play and record live TV in Windows Media Center (Windows 8.1 Pro Pack and Windows 8.1 Media Center Pack only)
  • Miracast requires a display adapter which supports Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) 1.3, and a Wi-Fi adapter that supports Wi-Fi Direct
  • Wi-Fi Direct Printing requires a Wi-Fi adapter that supports Wi-Fi Direct and a device that supports Wi-Fi Direct Printing
  • Free internet TV content varies by geography, some content might require additional fees (Windows 8.1 Pro Pack and Windows 8.1 Media Center Pack only)
  • To install a 64-bit OS on a 64-bit PC, your processor needs to support CMPXCHG16b, PrefetchW, and LAHF/SAHF
  • InstantGo works only with computers designed for Connected Standby

This is the same as for Windows 8 RTM, in fact, the resolution requirement for snapping Modern apps is now lower, so if your PC is able to run Windows 8, then you can safely upgrade to Windows 8.1. If your PC is currently running Windows 7 or Windows 8, you can check to see if it meets the requirements by running the Upgrade Assistant.

Windows 8.1 will bring for you some improvements like

  • More customization options for the Start screen
  • Bing search integration
  • The legendary Start button
  • Lock Screen slideshow
  • Snap feature which allows you to resize and snap Modern apps as long as your screen resolution is 1024 x 768 or higher
  • PC Settings app which is greatly expanded
  • Internet Explorer 11
  • SkyDrive App and service integration
  • Direct boot to Desktop
  • Newly installed apps do not pin themselves to the Start screen
  • Shutdown options in the Win+X menu
  • Many more built-in new apps
  • Miracast media streaming
  • Wi-Fi Direct and NFC printing
  • DirectX 11.2
  • Improvements to DPI scaling including individual PPI scaling for multiple monitors
  • PowerShell 4.0
  • Mobile broadband tethering
    ... and much more!

If you want to try Windows 8.1 before switching to it completely, you can get the evaluation edition of Windows 8.1 at the following page:

 Microsoft's TechNet Evaluation Center

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Author: Sergey Tkachenko

Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube.

2 thoughts on “Windows 8.1 system requirements and new features”

  1. Can i get windows 8, Direct X, Games software, smadav antivirus 2018 and microsoft office 2010 And how much for all of this

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