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A Complete Guide to Windows 8 Release Preview – Requirements, Installation, Screenshots

Well, yes, Windows 8 Release Preview has been released. As Microsoft reimagines Windows, here is your chance to take it for a spin on a variety of form factors, including the new generation of touch devices. Let’s dive into the details, and get started.

Requirements

  • Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster                 
  • RAM: 1 gigabyte (GB) (32-bit) or 2 GB  (64-bit)                
  • Hard disk space: 16 GB (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)                
  • Graphics card: Microsoft DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM driver                

Of course, you will need a tablet or a monitor that supports multi-touch for the touch experience on Windows 8. The OS requires a screen resolution of at least 1024 x 768 to access the Windows Store and at least 1366 x 768 to snap apps.

Availability

Windows 8 Release Preview is available in 14 languages – Arabic, English, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), French, German, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese (Brazil), Russian, Spanish, Swedish, and Turkish. The Windows 8 Release Preview Setup program will automatically detect your current language selection. If you don’t have one of these languages selected, you can choose the language you want to download.

Microsoft has surprisingly allowed for upgrades to Windows 8 Release Preview from all Windows versions going back to as far as Windows XP. If you are upgrading from an earlier preview version of Windows 8, while your files will be saved in a Windows.old folder, it would be otherwise a clean installation with nothing else preserved.  In the most seamless upgrade experience of all, while upgrading from Windows 7, all programs, Windows settings, and User accounts and files are retained. From Windows Vista, you lose the installed programs and from Windows XP, you lose everything except the User accounts and files.

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