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Memory upgrades not a surety

Memory upgrades not a surety

Box builders say they won't be rushing to upgrade PC memory to cope with Microsoft's new Vista operating system despite recommending users do so.

With several players claiming the operating systems need 1GB-2GB of RAM for peak performance, many PCs being sold today fell under spec for a good user experience, Kingston regional manager, Marites Bairstow, said.

"Microsoft recommends 512MB of RAM minimum but we expect the OEM manufacturers will start populating their models with 1GB RAM on at least half the machines they sell," she said.

Altech national sales manager, Kevin Hartin, concurred that a lot of machines were potentially upgradeable. But he predicted most users would choose to run Vista with just 512MB onboard. Systems for the price conscious consumer would also continue to be sold with the same amount of memory as standard, he said.

Plus Corporation managing director, Nigel Fernandes, said Vista's demand for memory wasn't a sure-fire win for module makers. The builder planned to continue turning out business machines with the minimum 512MB memory on-board.

"To run Vista with the Aero interface and other memory-intensive features, you need a DirectX 9 graphics card. But business machines are often just running integrated graphics from the motherboard," he said. "For home users we'll suggest 1GB of RAM and a good video card, but most business users can't run Aero anyway, so we'll just stick to 512MB there."

Bairstow was adamant, however, that more memory was a must-have for Vista users.

"You really do need that memory content to be able to make Vista function the way you will want it to function," she said. "For Kingston, there is definitely an upgrade path there."

In the meantime, Hartin said it could be nearing the middle of 2007 before the public started to upgrade to Vista.

"I think it will take a few months for customers to get their heads around it and until they start seeing magazines raving about the new interface and benefits, they're probably going to be quite reluctant to go with it," he said.

Industry analyst, Gartner, forecast 4.9 per cent of home PCs and 4.2 per cent of business PCs already running an earlier operating system will be upgraded to Vista sometime in 2007.


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