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Q. Does Windows 10 Need Brand-Specific Hardware?

Q. Does Windows 10 Need Brand-Specific Hardware?

Q. According to an Italian PC magazine, due to a special partnership between Intel and Microsoft, Windows 10 performs at its best only on a PC/tablet whose hardware is specifically designed for this purpose. Therefore no machine born to work with Windows 7 or 8 is really suitable. Is all this true?

A. No. Win10’s hardware requirements are actually rather modest, as the Windows 10 Specifications page states.

I’m running Win10 on some PCs from the XP and Vista eras, and they’re working fine. In fact, in some cases, those older PCs actually run a skosh faster under Win10 than they did with their original operating systems.

I don't have a copy of the article you read. Perhaps it may have been referring to some special-purpose Windows 10 features such as “Windows Hello,” which has features like facial recognition, iris (eye) recognition, or fingerprint scanning -- all of which needs specialized hardware. Facial recognition, for example, requires an illuminated infrared camera; fingerprint scanning requires an appropriate optical- or capacitance-based device; and so on.

Other nonessential features also require specialized hardware. See the full list on the Windows 10 specifications page.

But these optional technologies have nothing to do with Win10’s basic functionality. Again, Windows 10 runs just fine on most older hardware.


Editor's note: We feature an abridged Q&A from Fred Langa's LANGALIST, a column available exclusively to paid subscribers of the Windows Secrets newsletter,. What you see here is just a small sampling of what Langa's writing for the newsletter — go here for more information on how to subscribe.

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