About Windows 7
On this page:
- System requirements
- Windows 7 at IU
- Windows 7 versions and upgrades
- Support for older versions of Windows
Windows 7 is not an upgrade to Windows Vista, but an entirely new operating system. With Windows 7, you can expect greater functionality in communication, multimedia, and security, including improved, streamlined User Account Control (UAC) performance with fewer prompts. The interface introduced with Vista, Windows Aero, uses 3D graphics and other high-end visual effects.
To run a compatibility scan, see Windows Compatibility Center.
The minimum hardware requirements for Windows 7 as specified by Microsoft, as well as further recommendations from UITS, are listed as follows:
- 1 GHz 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor
UITS recommends: A dual-core (Core 2) processor
- 1 GB of system memory (32-bit) or 2 GB of system memory (64-bit)
UITS recommends: 2 GB system memory
- A graphics processor that is DirectX 9-capable with Hardware Pixel
Shader v2.0 and WDDM Driver support
- 128 MB of graphics memory
UITS recommends: 256 MB graphics memory; non-integrated video card
- 40 GB of hard drive capacity with 16 GB free space (32-bit) or 20
GB free space (64-bit)
UITS recommends: 80-100 GB capacity
- DVD-ROM drive
- Audio output capability
- Internet access capability
For more, see Microsoft's Windows 7 system requirements.
Windows 7 at IU
Both 32- and 64-bit editions of Windows 7 are available to students, faculty, and staff on disk at campus bookstores for $20 plus tax.
Note: In order to install Windows 7 from these disks, you must already have Windows 7, Vista, or XP installed on your computer. If you have any of these, you can do a clean install, which includes formatting the hard drive; if you have Vista or Windows 7, you can upgrade to Windows 7 Ultimate.
By the terms of the IU/Microsoft Campus Agreement, each license key is capable of installing Windows 7 on only one computer. If you need to purchase a second copy, contact your campus Support Center for help.
For complete instructions, see At IU, how do I install Windows 8 or 7?
Windows 7 versions and upgrades
IU students, faculty, and staff will install and use Windows 7 Ultimate; IU departments will use Windows 7 Enterprise.
- If you are using any version of Windows 7 or Vista
except Enterprise, you can upgrade to Windows 7
Ultimate. For example, if you purchase a new computer from an
outside retailer, it might be shipped with Windows 7 Home Premium;
you can upgrade to Windows 7 Ultimate if you wish.
- Departments that use Vista Enterprise can upgrade to Windows 7
Enterprise. If you have Vista Enterprise for personal use, you
cannot upgrade that to Windows 7 Enterprise, but you can do a clean
install of Windows 7 Ultimate, which will format your hard drive and
remove your previous version of Windows.
- For all other versions of Windows, migrating to Windows 7 will
require a clean install.
- Your upgrade path must be consistent with your system type (i.e.,
you cannot upgrade from Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit to Windows 7
Ultimate 64-bit, or from a 64-bit to a 32-bit operating system).
- The 64-bit version will not run on a 32-bit computer. If you're not sure what you need, see In Windows 7 or Vista, how can I tell whether I have the 32-bit or 64-bit version? or contact your campus Support Center.
Note: Windows 7 Home Premium does not have all the features of the Ultimate or Enterprise versions; specifically, it cannot join IU's Active Directory domain. UITS recommends that Windows 7 Home Premium users upgrade to Windows 7 Ultimate.
For information about upgrading from an earlier version of Windows, see Microsoft's Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor. For information about the differences between versions, see Microsoft's Which one is right for you?, or Wikipedia's Windows 7 editions comparison chart.
Support for older versions of Windows
UITS will continue to support Windows XP and Vista for some time after the release of Windows 7. Microsoft has announced that it will provide security patches and updates to Windows XP until April 2014 and for Windows Vista for the foreseeable future.