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Microsoft sets maximum hardware spec for netbook-only Windows 7 SKUs

13 comments Thursday, May 28, 2009

According to tech site TechARP, Microsoft has set the maximum hardware specification that OEMs will be able to pre-install the cheaper netbook-only Windows 7 SKUs onto.

The three SKUs considered here are:

  • Windows 7 Starter
  • Windows 7 Starter for Small Notebook PC
  • Windows 7 Home Basic For Small Notebook PCs (China only)

Microsoft already has a similar limitation in place on OEMs offering XP on low-cost systems, called the Microsoft Windows XP Home Ultra Low Cost PC (ULCPC) program.

Here is the new Windows 7 maximum hardware spec. I’ve added the current spec for comparison.

  • CPU: Single core CPUs no faster than 2GHz and with a TDP no greater than 15W.
    Currently the limitation is only 1GHz, or the following CPUs: Intel Atom N270, N280, 230, Z500, Z510, Z515, Z520, Z530, Z540, Z550, or Intel Celeron 220, or AMD MV-40, 1050P, TF-20, Geode LX, Athlon 2650e, Sempron 210U, or VIA C7-M ULV, Nano U1700, U2250, U2300, U2400 or U2500.
  • Screen size: No larger than 10.2″.
    Currently the limitation is 12.1.
  • RAM: 2GB.
    Currently the limitation is 1GB.
  • Storage: 250GB HDD or 64GB SSD.
    Currently the limitation is 160GB HDD or 32GB SDD.
  • Graphics: No limitation
    Currently the limitation is no greater than DirectX 9.
  • Touch: No limitation.
    Currently the limitation is resistive only

So, basically what’s really changed is that you can have more RAM and storage but the screen size has shrunk by nearly two inches and with a more rigid CPU requirements.

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Rumor: Speedier Next-Gen iPhone Is on Its Way

You’re probably already stuffed with iPhone rumors, but consider this dessert. Daring Fireball’s John Gruber has heard from “informed sources” that the next-generation iPhone will receive a significant processor upgrade, bumping the speed to 600MHz, which should make the new handset 1.5 times as fast as the current 400MHz iPhone CPU. He also claims receiving confirmation of rumors that the next iPhone will feature a magnetometer (digital compass) and a video camera.

One last morsel: MacTalk reports that Vodafone has declared the current 16GB iPhone has been labeled “End of Life,” meaning new iPhones are on their way.

When? Gruber predicts the announcement will be made at Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference, which kicks off June 8, and the phone will hit stores in July. That’s a reasonable assumption, because Apple announced the current iPhone 3G at 2008’s WWDC. Also, Apple will likely have to hold WWDC sessions devoted to the new iPhone’s API, and the company would of course have to announce the product first.

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Gadgets: fashion for the broken leg set


Cooper Martin Clothing

If you have ever broken a major appendage, you quickly realize that the simple things in life are now, not at all simple. That explains why so many people who, for example, break a leg, resort to wearing sweat pants or shorts; it's not just the easiest but sometimes the only option.

The company Cooper Martin agrees, that's why they came up with their line of clothing for just this occasion. The clothes have strategically placed zippers and Velcro on business casual clothing.

You can see how it works at

Photo Shower Curtain

Some family pictures are priceless and it's not enough for them to have that prized spot on the mantel, so why not immortalize it in a shower curtain; it's cooler than you think.

The makers at take your favorite photo and turn it into a customized curtain; either for a standard bath tub size or stand alone shower.

The makers claim you can launder the curtain and never have to worry about fading or warping.

You can see it for yourself at

Finis Circuit Trainer

The couch potato in all of us can come up with many excuses of why we can't exercise today and fitness companies, like Finis, are getting wise to lazy ways.

The circuit trainer performs the job of a timer, but better. How it works, you set the amount of time you want to workout then set the amount of time you want to rest; the trainer lets you know when each time is up and it's time to get going again.

The Circuit Trainer lets you know when time is up through lights and a buzzer.

You can learn all about it at

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