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Josheir

Visual Studio Hardware Requirements Seem Lower

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I an getting ready to purchase a computer dedicated to just Visual Studio c++ express and maybe vb express.  It won't be on the internet except for the installs and maybe virus protection.  I will be using DirectX.

 

These are the hardware requirements by Windows for Visual Studio 2015 express:

 

Hardware requirements

  • 1.6 GHz or faster processor

  • 1 GB of RAM (1.5 GB if running on a virtual machine)

  • 5 GB of available hard disk space

  • 5400 RPM hard disk drive

  • DirectX 9-capable video card that runs at 1024 x 768 or higher display resolution

 

I want to buy a laptop or a desktop for the IDE and debugging.  Of course, with an additional graphics card to run the program and debug it at the same time.

 

I want something pretty quick and I just can't believe that a 1.6 GHz processor is going to do what I need.

 

So these are the requirements (I guess.) but what are your recommendations?

 

My project is just 2D, but I also want a nice affordable graphics card for if I start programming 3D later or if the system is retired much later to gaming.

 

Thank you,

 

Josheir

Edited by Josheir

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Keep in mind those are the minimum specs - the least you will need to get a (barely) tolerable experience. Often with minspecs you don't even get a smooth experience, it just "works". Sort of.

You'll also notice that the Windows 10 minspec is suspiciously close to the VS2015 minspec.


Just because you "can" doesn't mean you'll have a good time :-)


The typical rule of thumb is get enough beef in your machine to play a game like the one you want to make. Then give yourself 30-50% more power to get "headroom" so you can debug, run unoptimized builds, etc.

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I have VS2015 running fine on my surface pro 3 (i5, 4GBRam, SSD)

Any half decent laptop will be above the min requirements and should be ok,

Get SSD if in your budget and the fastest CPU and the most ram your budget will support :)

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Most any new laptop these days should be enough -- you probably want an i3 at a minimum, you probably want 8GB at a minimum, and you probably want an SSD drive, and it sounds like you want at least 1 external video port (easy) if not two (many -- if not most -- laptops have this) -- Even with one external port, you should still be able to use the laptop's display for debugging while your program runs on an external monitor.

 

On the topic of GPUs, even integrated graphics are quite capable these days -- You can play a game like Bioshock Infinite on modest settings at lower resolutions at 30FPS or more with a mid-tier integrated Intel GPU, and the Skylake ones, at least, are Direct3D 12. They're more than enough for 2D, and more than enough to experiment and grow into modest 3D graphics. They'll just never be a 3D powerhouse.

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I want something pretty quick and I just can't believe that a 1.6 GHz processor is going to do what I need.

 

As above the minimum specs are minimum.   However, look at those specs for real.

 

I had machines back in 2003 that exceeded those specs.  

 

This is 2016.  Even cheap cell phones have better processors than that.  

 

That's a single core 1.6 GHz processor they're talking about, so anything beyond a Pentium 4 era (2002 or so) has you covered.  I don't think you can even buy 1GB memory sticks any more, looking around online the cheapest sticks I can find ($14.99) are 4GB. Having a 5GB hard drive is nothing, even disposable USB thumb drives are bigger. DX9 graphics card is probably the biggest thing on the list, but again that is technology from twelve years ago.

 

Any reasonably modern PC -- basically anything built in the last decade -- can meet those specs.

 

Thinking on it, it would actually be an expensive trip to museum-type stores specializing in old hardware in order to build something that DIDN'T meet those specs.  Any cheap walmart special could meet them.

 

 

 

Look at the product you are building on the computer and use that as your guide.  

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What is the best edition of Win10 for me?

 

Thanks,

 

Joshua

 

(Sorry, ApochPiQ)  :-)

Edited by Josheir

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What is the best edition of Win10 for me?
 

 

If you have to ask, then the one that comes pre-installed on the computer you buy will be adequate.

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What is the best edition of Win10 for me?

 

 

 

The key things that pro offers over home are

 

1) Run VMs using hypervisor, Can get around this with 3rd party software like virtualbox but on laptop you will probably not be running VMs

2) Remote onto the machine using MS stack and remotedesktop software, can use other software to get similar effect but if laptop doubt you want to remote to it.

3) Join a domain, unless you are using in an enterprise environment then not required.

As frob pointed out, if you are having to ask then what pro offers over home are outside you requirements :)

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I want something pretty quick and I just can't believe that a 1.6 GHz processor is going to do what I need.
Part of the specs is marketing. Clock speeds are decreasing, and you don't want to loose customers by giving too high required specs.

 

On the other hand, Visual Studio does editing and compiling only, where the former is about 90% of the time. You cannot type fast enough to keep up with any processor. Compiling will be slow obviously at a low level spec computer. But minimum means "the compiler produces a proper result", without having an upper bound on time.

 

Finally, compiling code is something very different from running the compiled result. Visual studio doesn't do the latter, so that's not included in the required specs.

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