Skip to main content

Recommended PC Laptop Hardware

Northwestern Information Technology (IT) establishes minimum hardware guidelines to assist in purchasing a computer for use at Northwestern. Check with your individual school for additional requirements.

Laptop — Minimum

*NOTE* In order to comply with Northwestern IT's encryption policy, please turn on TPM (Trusted Platform Module) upon set up of your computer. This module allows the computer to be encrypted with Bitlocker, which is Northwestern IT's encryption solution.

Expect to use the computer for basic productivity, running multiple applications such as e-mail, web browsing, word processing, music and video players, and photo organization.

Category Description
Processor Intel® Core™ i5 Processor
Memory 8GB
Storage 256GB Solid State hard disk (SSD)
Optical drive Optional
Network Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11a/b/g/n wireless, Bluetooth 4.0
Graphics Integrated graphics
Ports USB 3.0, HDMI, Mini DiplayPort
Battery 4-cell Li-ion battery
Operating system Windows 10 64-bit Professional 
Warranty 3 year onsite next business day

 


Laptop — Power User

In addition to the tasks above, expect to resource intensive programs for audio/video editing, graphic design, running multiple operating systems, storing large multimedia files and playing games. Some examples of applications that perform better with a power user configuration include MATLAB, AutoCAD, and Adobe Creative Cloud.

Category Description
Processor Intel® Core™ i7 Processor
Memory 16 GB
Storage 512GB Solid State hard disk (SSD)
Optical drive Optional
Network Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11a/b/g/n wireless, Bluetooth 4.0
Graphics 1GB Dedicated Video Card
Ports 3 USB 3.0 ports, 1 HDMI port
Battery 6-cell Li-ion battery
Operating system Windows 10 64-bit Professional
Warranty 3 year onsite next business day

 

Last Updated: 21 April 2020

Get Help Back to top