Computer and Software Support

Windows XP requirements


Here's What You Need to Use Windows XP Professional

  • PC with 300 megahertz or higher processor clock speed recommended; 233 MHz minimum required (single or dual processor system);* Intel Pentium/Celeron family, or AMD K6/Athlon/Duron family, or compatible processor recommended
  • 128 megabytes (MB) of RAM or higher recommended (64 MB minimum supported; may limit performance and some features)
  • 1.5 gigabytes (GB) of available hard disk space*
  • Super VGA (800 × 600) or higher-resolution video adapter and monitor
  • CD-ROM or DVD drive
  • Keyboard and Microsoft Mouse or compatible pointing device

Additional Items or Services Required to Use Certain Windows XP Features

  • For Internet access:
    • Some Internet functionality may require Internet access, a Microsoft .NET Passport account, and payment of a separate fee to a service provider; local and/or long-distance telephone toll charges may apply
    • 14.4 kilobits per second (Kbps) or higher-speed modem
  • For networking:
    • Network adapter appropriate for the type of local-area, wide-area, wireless, or home network you wish to connect to, and access to an appropriate network infrastructure; access to third-party networks may require additional charges
  • For instant messaging, voice and videoconferencing, and application sharing, both parties need:
    • Microsoft .NET Passport account and Internet access or Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server instant messaging account and network access (some configurations may require download of additional components)
  • For voice and videoconferencing, both parties also need:
    • 33.6 Kbps or higher-speed modem, or a network connection
    • Microphone and sound card with speakers or headset
  • For videoconferencing, both parties also need:
    • Video conferencing camera
    • Windows XP
  • For application sharing, both parties also need:
    • 33.6 Kbps or higher-speed modem, or a network connection
    • Windows XP
  • For remote assistance:
    • Both parties must be running Windows XP and be connected by a network
  • For remote desktop:
    • A Windows 95 or later–based computer, and the two machines must be connected by a network
  • For sound:
    • Sound card and speakers or headphones
  • For DVD video playback:
    • DVD drive and DVD decoder card or DVD decoder software
    • 8 MB of video RAM
  • For Windows Movie Maker:
    • Video capture feature requires appropriate digital or analog video capture device
    • 400 MHz or higher processor for digital video camera capture

* Actual requirements will vary based on your system configuration and the applications and features you choose to install. Additional available hard disk space may be required if you are installing over a network.

Files required to boot

File Location
NTLDR - Hidden, read only system file loads the operating system Root of the active partition
Boot.ini - Read only system file, used to build the boot menu. Root of the active partition
Bootsect.dos - Hidden system file loaded by NTLDR only if dual booting, another OS Root of the active partition - Hidden, read only system file used to build a hardware list and pass the information back to NTLDR to be added to the registry later in the boot process. Root of the active partition
Ntbootdd.sys - (only if booting from a SCSI partition, and SCSI BIOS is not proesent on the controller) Root of the active partition
Ntoskrnl.exe - This is the kernel file. Systemroot\System32
SYSTEM - Controls which drivers and services are loaded. Systemroot\System32\Config
Device drivers - These are files that support various device drivers Systemroot\System32\Drivers