If you currently have a personal computer running Windows 7, Windows XP or Windows Vista then you can upgrade toWindows 8 Pro (Professional). With Windows 8 Pro, you can connect and share your files. Windows 8 Pro also adds enhanced features if you need to connect to company networks, access remote files, encrypt sensitive data, and other more advanced tasks.
The new Windows 8 start screen is your personalized home for items you use the most and can be customized according to your user preferences. Windows 8 Live tiles provide real-time updates from your Facebook, Twitter, and e-mail accounts. Along with the new Start screen, the lock screen now includes e-mail, calendar, and clock widgets.
To access your PC, Microsoft has replaced a standard PIN or password with a swipe gesture; unlock your PC by clicking or swiping preset locations you’ve selected on the lock screen. New functions also allow you to search for your favorite software programs, open, close, hide, resize, or run multiple apps simultaneously with the swipe of a finger or a swipe of the mouse.
Windows has also made changes to make your PC more secure by boosting its existing security features and adding “SmartScreen,” which acts to prevent suspicious programs or apps from being installed or running on your machine. Finally, Windows 8 also gives you the ability to “refresh” itself to give users a new starting point and a cleaner version of Windows.
You can upgrade to Windows 8 from Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows 8 Release Preview, Windows 8 Consumer Preview, or Windows Developer Preview, but you might not be able to keep all of your files, software programs, and settings. The following table shows what you can keep during an upgrade, depending on the current version of Windows you are running. If you choose to boot from removable media, you won’t be able to keep your software programs, Windows settings, or personal files when you upgrade.
|Upgrading from:||What you can keep:|
|Windows 8 Preview||Personal files|
|Windows 8 Developer Preview||Nothing, but your old files will be saved in the “windows.old” folder|
|Windows 7||Software programs; Windows settings; personal files|
|Windows Vista||Windows settings; personal files|
|Windows XP||Personal files|
- 1 GHz processor
- 2 GB RAM
- 20 GB available hard disk space
- 1366 × 768 screen resolution
- DirectX 9 graphics processor with WDDM driver
Additional Requirements to Use Certain Features
- Internet access (fees may apply)
- For touchscreen, you need a tablet or a monitor that supports multi-touch
- Microsoft account required for some features
- Watching DVDs requires separate playback software
- Windows Media Center license sold separately
- To access the Windows Store and to download and run apps, you need an active Internet connection and a screen resolution of at least 1024 x 768
- To snap apps, you need a screen resolution of at least 1366 x 768