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Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition: System requirements

Updated: January 21, 2005

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition: System requirements

To ensure adequate performance, make sure that computers on which you install or upgrade to Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition meet the following requirements:

  • For an x86-based computer:

    • One or more processors with a recommended minimum speed of 550 megahertz (MHz). The minimum supported speed is 133 MHz. A maximum of eight processors per computer is supported. Processors from the Intel Pentium/Celeron family, AMD K6/Athlon/Duron family, or compatible processors are recommended.

    • 256 megabytes (MB) of RAM (recommended minimum). 128 MB is the minimum supported, and 32 gigabytes (GB) is the maximum supported.

      For computers with more than 4 GB of RAM, be sure to confirm hardware compatibility by clicking the appropriate link in Support resources.

  • For an Itanium-based computer:

    • One or more processors with a minimum speed of 733 MHz. A maximum of eight processors per computer is supported.

    • 1 GB of RAM minimum, 1024 GB (1 Terabyte) maximum.

      For computers with more than 4 GB of RAM, be sure to confirm hardware compatibility by clicking the appropriate link in Support resources.

  • For an x64-based computer:

    • One or more processors with a minimum speed of 1.4 GHz. A maximum of eight processors per computer is supported.

    • 1 GB of RAM minimum, 1024 GB (1 Terabyte) maximum.

      For computers with more than 4 GB of RAM, be sure to confirm hardware compatibility by clicking the appropriate link in Support resources.

  • A hard disk partition or volume with enough free space to accommodate the setup process. To ensure that you have flexibility in your later use of the operating system, we recommend that you allow considerably more space than the minimum required for running Setup, which is approximately 2 GB to 3 GB for x86-based versions of Windows Server 2003, and 4 GB for Itanium-based and x64-based versions of Windows Server 2003. The larger amount of space is required if you are running Setup across a network instead of from a CD-ROM, or if you are installing on a FAT or FAT32 partition in the case of x86-based or x64-based versions of Windows Server 2003. (NTFS is the recommended file system for both x86-based and x64-based versions of Windows Server 2003. Itanium-based versions of Windows Server 2003 support only NTFS).

    In addition, a domain controller upgrade from Windows NT 4.0 could require much more space than other upgrades or installations, because the existing user accounts database can expand by as much as a factor of ten during the upgrade, as Active Directory functionality is added.

    Note

  • A VGA or higher-resolution monitor (Super VGA 800x600 or higher recommended), keyboard, and (optionally) a mouse or other pointing device.

    As an alternative, for operation without a monitor or keyboard, you can choose a remote diagnostic and support processor that is designed for products in the Windows Server 2003 family. For more information about hardware compatibility, click the appropriate link in Support resources.

For CD-ROM installation:

  • A CD-ROM or DVD drive.

For network installation:

  • One or more network adapters and related cables that are designed for products in the Windows Server 2003 family. For more information about hardware compatibility, click the appropriate link in Support resources.

  • A server from which to offer network access for the Setup files.

For additional hardware-based functionality:

  • Appropriate hardware for the functionality you require. For example, if you plan to support network clients, the servers and clients must have appropriate network adapters and cables. As another example, if you require a server cluster, the entire cluster solution must be listed as compatible with Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition, (for more details, see information about cluster hardware and drivers in Planning and preparing for cluster installation). For more details about your hardware, click the appropriate link in Support resources.

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