Introduction to Windows Vista

Before you start

Objectives: learn about main features in certain Vista editions and minimal hardware requirements.

Prerequisites: no prerequisites.

Key terms: vista editions, starter, home basic, home premium, business, enterprise, ultimate, 32bit, 64bit, hardware requirements.


Vista Editions

Vista editions are:

  • Starter
  • Home Basic
  • Home Premium
  • Business
  • Enterprise
  • Ultimate

Starter

Windows Vista Starter edition does not support domains, Aero graphical user interface, Media Center, hard drive encryption, inbound network connections, and it can not be run on a Tablet PC. This edition supports only a single, 32-bit processor, and allows only three applications to run simultaneously.

Home Basic

Windows Vista Home Basic edition comes in 32-bit and 64-bit version. Home Basic does not support domains, Aero graphical user interface, Media Center, hard drive encryption, and can not be run on a Tablet PC. Home Basic does support parental controls and allows more than three applications open at once.

Home Premium

Windows Vista Home Premium does not support domains. Home Premium supports Aero graphical user interface, Media Center, and it can be run on a Tablet PC. Home Premium does support parental controls and allows more than three applications open at once.

Business

Windows Vista Business supports domains, Aero graphical user interface and it can be run on a Tablet PC. It does not support Media Center and full hard drive encryption.

Enterprise

Windows Vista Enterprise supports domains, Aero graphical user interface, it can use full hard drive encryption, and it can be run on a Tablet PC. It does not support Media Center functionality.

Ultimate

Windows Vista Ultimate supports all features of Windows Vista Enterprise and Premium.

32-bit versus 64-bit

Windows Vista comes in boh 32-bit and 64-bit editions (except Vista Starter edition). It is possible to run 32-bit edition of Windows Vista on a computer with a 64-bit processor, but it is not possible to run 64-bit editions on a 32-bit processor. The most important advantage of 64-bit edition of Windows is that it allows a computer to use more RAM than the 32-bit edition.

Hardware Requirements

To run Windows Vista our computer should meet (at a minimum) the following hardware specification:

  • 1-GHz or faster processor
  • 512 MB of RAM
  • 40 GB of available hard disk space
  • DVD-ROM drive
  • DirectX-capable graphics card with a Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) driver, Hardware Pixel Shader 2.0 support, and a minimum of 128 MB of graphics memory
  • Keyboard and Microsoft mouse or compatible pointing device

If we have an Windows XP machine which we want to upgrade, we can use Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor. Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor is a downloadable tool that allows us to determine whether a Windows XP computer is capable of running Windows Vista. We can download it from Microsoft web pages.

Remember

Vista editions are: Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium, Business, Enterprise and Ultimate. Windows Vista Business, Enterprise and Ultimate support domains. Windows Vista comes in both 32-bit and 64-bit editions (except Vista Starter edition). It is possible to run 32-bit edition of Windows Vista on a computer with a 64-bit processor, but it is not possible to run 64-bit editions on a 32-bit processor. To run Windows Vista our computer should meet (at a minimum) the following hardware specification: 1-GHz or faster processor, 512 MB of RAM, 40 GB of available hard disk space, DirectX-capable graphics card with a Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) driver, Hardware Pixel Shader 2.0 support, and a minimum of 128 MB of graphics memory.

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