NOTE TO and USERS: This is the same site. Your login will work here. Use the "forgot password" function if you need help recovering your password.

Get rid of this big black message box by joining here:

Obvious fact: You're not logged in.

Therefore, you're only seeing the tip of the iceberg of great discussion threads on this site. The frankest, most raw and truthful observations about employment and work life in the IT and engineering fields are in "members only" sections that are ONLY visible when you are registered and you log in.

If you're 35 or over, and work in IT, or are retired from IT, and you dislike the herd mentality and clueless, adolescent snobbery of forums such as "Hacker News", then you really should join this board. Why? Because you're too smart for Facebook. And everyone needs someone to gossip, commisserate, and chat with at their level.

Who we are:

A collection of IT, engineering and sciences professionals, in a variety of current circumstances with a variety of career backgrounds. Including:

  • System admins
  • Developers and programmers
  • Freelancers and "gig" entrepreneurs
  • Contract, job shopping and FTE-employed contract house IT workers
  • Web developers
  • Inventors
  • Artists and writers with tech backgrounds

This forum has its roots in the 1990s buildup of the IT field into what we know today and has been around since 2002. 10s of thousands of messages and threads about a variety of career, FTE, contract, and side gig issues and opportunities.

If you're as smart as the typical experienced IT professional, you have a critical mind that has a hard time staying engaged with pop culture and generic issues of the day. And you're WELL beyond the fanboy mentality of the young developer communities. Get some relief here.

Register on the board - your email is NEVER sold or provided to third parties. Then LOGIN FREQUENTLY to see new stuff daily. Note to long lost members: all politics have been marked as "opt in" only. You won't see anything political unless you ask for it.

Join by Registering here:

Author Topic: Can you really run Windows 8.1 with 1GHz cpu and 1GB ram?  (Read 11843 times)


  • CCF Winner's Circle - Supporter
  • Wise Sage
  • *
  • Posts: 2718
Can you really run Windows 8.1 with 1GHz cpu and 1GB ram?
« on: February 06, 2014, 01:39:09 pm »
I was recently reading an article saying that Windows is about as efficient as Linux because Win 8.1 system requirements state you only need a 1GHz processor and 1GB ram.  (see

Could you really do anything with that little of resource with 8.1?  What's realistic?  I'm asking because I don't use it and am curious.  Traditionally, Windows official "system requirements" were utterly unrealistic for real work. Is that still the case with 8.1 or have things changed?

Thanks for your feedback.

BTW-- I see that XP support ends on April 8th but that anti-malware support continues until July 14, 2015 ( I've got an old XP system I'd like to keep around for rare use...

The Gorn

  • I absolutely DESPISE improvised sulfur-charcoal-salt peter cannons made out of hollow tree branches filled with diamonds as projectiles.
  • Trusted Member
  • Wise Sage
  • ******
  • Posts: 22518
  • Gorn Classic, user of Gornix
Re: Can you really run Windows 8.1 with 1GHz cpu and 1GB ram?
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2014, 02:24:39 pm »
It doesn't make any sense. Every edition of Windows has demanded much higher CPU speed and much greater memory than the version that preceded it because every new edition has a raft of new features and more overhead. Win 95 to Win 98 probably demanded twice the machine, and again when Win 2000 came out, and again when Win XP came out.

I say bullcrap, it's PR spin.
Gornix is protected by the GPL. *

* Gorn Public License. Duplication by inferior sentient species prohibited.


  • CCF Winner's Circle - Supporter
  • Wise Sage
  • *
  • Posts: 2452
Re: Can you really run Windows 8.1 with 1GHz cpu and 1GB ram?
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2014, 02:55:50 pm »
I'd say, no way.  A 1Ghz cpu might work technically, but it would be dog slow. In fact, Windows 8.x is a dog all by itself.  One of the worst UIs I've ever seen.

You could keep an XP machine around for a long time.  Microsoft wants to get rid of XP, of course, but there are still millions of people that use it.  I think limited use is probably ok.  I have my old XP PC just hanging around.  I'm not sure what the heck to do with it.  Too good to throw out, but not good enough for anything else so far.


  • CCF Winner's Circle - Supporter
  • Occasional User
  • *
  • Posts: 50
Re: Can you really run Windows 8.1 with 1GHz cpu and 1GB ram?
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2014, 04:54:33 pm »
I got this dell 11 on sale around xmas for $279. It's pretty bare bones but a little more than your question posed.  Immediately upgraded the win 8 to win 8.1.  Put my turbotax on.  Ordered a second disk.  Removed first and stored it away until tax time.  Put new disk in. Installed ubuntu 12 LTS.  My way of keeping Mr. Gates and his gang from draining my life force, at least as in so far as possible.

Neither os runs lightning fast.  But what did I expect for that price, right?  May upgrade memory 2 to 4g (~$50) and that may help.

Following links are not sales pitches, but just to try to answer your question about what a minimalist configuration can do with these os's.  See some of the posters' comments.  These people are way more into it than I.

Oh, forgot to mention-- when I was fooling with the boot up settings to get around UEFI (what fun) so I could switch from Windows to Ubuntu, I messed something up (just temporarily) and got a black screen with big letters "OPERATOR SYSTEM MISSING".   I kid you not.  Shades of the ancient "ALL YOUR BASE ARE BELONG TO US".

« Last Edit: February 06, 2014, 05:27:26 pm by ronin »


  • CCF Winner's Circle - Supporter
  • Wise Sage
  • *
  • Posts: 2718
Re: Can you really run Windows 8.1 with 1GHz cpu and 1GB ram?
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2014, 08:15:56 pm »
Thanks for the feedback, everyone. I feel dumb not to know the answer to this question but I've really fallen out of touch in regards to Windows.

JoFrance, any machine that runs XP runs Linux just fine, and you can do almost anything with it (except maybe run high-end Windows games). Put Mint or Ubuntu or Vector on your old box (co-residing with XP) and it'll be useful again.



  • CCF Winner's Circle - Supporter
  • Wise Sage
  • *
  • Posts: 1681
Re: Can you really run Windows 8.1 with 1GHz cpu and 1GB ram?
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2014, 02:38:50 am »
For anyone who hates the Windows 8 UI.

This free download will make Windows 8 look like Windows 7 with a start menu, etc.   My sister has a new system with Windows 8 and it was driving her crazy.  I put on Classic Shell and she loves it now.

I have Windows 8 in a virtual machine with 2GB of memory and it runs OK.  I would not want any system with less than that.  MS's propaganda machine is hard at work!