ITS Computer Recommendations

The following recommendations will meet the needs of the general UH staff and students for email, web browsing, word processing, spreadsheet and other office productivity software. The systems listed are ITS minimum level recommendations. ITS recommends purchasing the systems listed below or systems that exceed these specifications.

UH students should consult with their respective college/school/department for specialized hardware/software requirements for their field of study, that are not covered under these general recommendations.

UH administrative users are advised to check whether the administrative applications required for use are compatible with Windows 10. If an administrative application may not be compatible, you may need to downgrade to Windows 7 to ensure compatibility.

PC Desktop:

Intel Core i5 Processor (64-bit)
8GB RAM (minimum); 16GB RAM or more (recommended)
1TB Hard Drive OR 256GB Solid State Drive
DVD +/-RW Dual Layer Drive
10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet Connection
Windows 7 Professional or Windows 10 Pro*
3-year On-site Warranty

PC Laptop:

Intel Core i5 Processor (64-bit)
8GB RAM (minimum); 16GB RAM or more (recommended)
1 TB Hard Drive OR 256GB Solid State Drive (recommended)
DVD +/-RW Dual Layer Drive OR external USB DVD +/- RW Drive (1)
10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet Connection
Wireless 802.11n built-in
Windows 7 Professional or Windows 10 Pro*
3-year On-site Warranty (recommended adding complete hardware coverage to protect from accidental damage)

(1) Ultrabooks (sub-15" notebooks) no longer come with an internal optical disc drive. If one is needed, purchase an external USB DVD+/-RW drive.

If the PC is specified with a solid state drive, purchase an external USB hard drive for additional storage and backup (optional but highly recommended).

Microsoft Windows:

Windows 10 Advisory: Microsoft released Windows 10 for general availability on July 29, 2015. Windows 10 Anniversary Update (version 1607) was released on August 2, 2016. Please review Windows 10 FAQs for more information.

*UH administrative users are advised to check whether the administrative applications required for use are compatible with Windows 10. If an administrative application may not be compatible, you may need to downgrade to Windows 7 to ensure compatibility. Review the Windows Browser Matrix for ITS-supported Web Applications.
McAfee anti-virus:  The current version of McAfee VirusScan Enterprise 8.8 Patch 8 supports Windows 10 Anniversary Update (version 1607). See http://www.hawaii.edu/askus/1651.
UH non-administrative users and students who use general business applications, such as email, web browsing, word processing, spreadsheets, and other office productivity software, may opt to use Windows 10 Pro. In general, ensure that your hardware is Windows 10 Pro-ready, even if all your applications are not Windows 10-compatible yet.

Note to UH Departments: If newly purchased UH computers are preinstalled with Windows 10 (without the option for Windows 7), one option is to purchase Windows 10 from the vendor and then purchase the Windows 10 Pro or the Windows 10 Education Upgrade License with Software Assurance (Education is the academic product name for the Enterprise version) from the ITS Site License Office. The Windows 10 Pro or Education Upgrade License will allow you to downgrade the OS to use Windows 7 Professional in its place. When all the applications used in your work are certified to function properly with Windows 10, or when you are ready to convert to the Windows 10 OS, you may use the Upgrade License to install Windows 10 Pro or Education, depending on what was initially purchased. See the ITS Site License website for details.

Note: Windows 7 Professional and Windows 10 Pro are available in 32-bit and 64-bit versions. There may be some applications that may not work with the 64-bit version at this time. If you are considering purchasing the 64-bit Windows 7/10 Pro, please verify with your vendor that your critical applications are supported on the 64-bit version. In general, 32-bit applications work in 64-bit Windows.

Macintosh Desktop:

Intel Core i5 processor
8GB RAM minimum; 16GB recommended
1TB hard drive or larger
10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet Connection
MacOS 10.11
Applecare (3 year warranty)
SuperDrive (CDRW and DVD+/-RW drive) (2)

(2) iMac and Mac mini no longer come with a SuperDrive. If one is needed, an external USB superdrive would have to be purchased.

Macintosh Laptop:

(if used as a primary computer)

Intel Core i5 processor
8GB RAM minimum; 16GB recommended
250GB flash storage or larger
10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet Connection (3)(4)
Wireless 802.11n built-in
MacOS 10.11
Applecare (3 year warranty)
SuperDrive (CDRW and DVD+/-RW drive) (5)

(3) MacBook Air requires purchase of a usb to ethernet adapter.
(4) MacBook Pro with retina display requires purchase of a thunderbolt to ethernet adapter.
(5) MacBook Air and MacBook Pro with retina display do not come with a SuperDrive. If one is needed, an external USB superdrive would have to be purchased.

Printing:

UH administrative systems no longer require special printer requirements, e.g. postscript. Documents can be printed to any locally attached printer.

For printers being used by a single individual or shared amongst a small number of staff (2-3 users), a printer with a USB connection should suffice with sharing done through a host computer that is directly connected to the network.

For printers being shared amongst a large number of staff (5+ users), a network-capable printer, preferably with wired Ethernet connectivity, should be considered. When setting up the network-capable printer, follow the recommendations for securing network printers and multi-function devices listed in http://www.hawaii.edu/askus/1357.

Purchasing:

PC's can be purchased through the UH Dell Store or the UH Bookstore and Mac's can be purchased through the UH Bookstore. HP Printers are available locally. If you need help deciding on a system, please contact the ITS Help Desk (call 956-8883 or email help@hawaii.edu) for PCs and Teresa Sakata (956-2399, teresa@hawaii.edu) for Macs.

Last reviewed: December 5, 2016

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Article ID: 585
Created: Wed, 12 Apr 2006 11:21am
Modified: Mon, 05 Dec 2016 12:52pm