Recommended Computer Specs

Information Services Recommended Models
The University has entered into partnerships with Apple and HP for providing desktop and laptop computers to the faculty and staff. Information Services has selected the following models for general use.

What do you recommend for a student laptop?

Recommended Specs:

  • An Intel i5 (or equivalent) processor running at 2.4 GHz or higher
  • At least 4 GB of system memory
  • A 250 GB or larger hard drive
  • A dedicated video/graphics card with at least 512 MB of memory
  • WiFi support for the A, B, G, and N (A/B/G/N) wireless standards
  • Microsoft Windows 7 or 8,  or Mac OS X 10.7 or higher

Recommended Accessories:

  • A total system backup device, such as an inexpensive external USB hard drive (with at least as much capacity as your computer’s hard drive)
  • At least one high-capacity (2GB or larger) USB flash drive for storing and moving important documents and files
  • A DVD-RW (DVD-recordable and -rewritable) optical drive, built-in or external.
  • A mid-range or higher-end color inkjet printer for personal in-room printing (note that black-and-white laser printers are available in most public-access computer labs and that students receive a per-semester quota of free printing)
  • A combination surge protector and uninterruptible power supply (UPS) unit, such as an APC Back-UPS model
  • All original computer system manuals and discs (this is very important for troubleshooting and repair in the event of a system crash)

Note that these are recommendations only. Students may do just fine if they have equipment that is below these specs. Many students also bring other mobile devices such as smart phones, iPods, or tablets to campus and connect to our wireless network with them.

See the additional question on this page for desktop computer recommendations.

Link to this section of the page.

What do you recommend for a desktop computer?

Recommended Specs:

  • An Intel i5 (or equivalent) processor running at 2.4 GHz or higher
  • At least 4 GB of system memory
  • A 250 GB or larger hard drive
  • A 17-inch or larger widescreen LCD monitor
  • A DVD-RW (DVD-recordable and -rewritable) optical drive
  • A dedicated video/graphics card with at least 512 MB of memory
  • A 10/100/1000 Network Interface Card (NIC), also known as an Ethernet network card
  • A wireless NIC that supports the A, B, G, and N (A/B/G/N) wireless standards. (Note that some of our residential halls are WiFi-only.)
  • Microsoft Windows 7 or 8,  or Mac OS X 10.7 or higher

Recommended Accessories:

  • A total system backup device, such as an inexpensive external USB hard drive (with at least as much capacity as your computer’s hard drive)
  • At least one high-capacity (2GB or larger) USB flash drive for storing and moving important documents and files
  • A mid-range or higher-end color inkjet printer for personal in-room printing (note that black-and-white laser printers are available in most public-access computer labs and that students receive a per-semester quota of free printing)
  • A combination surge protector and uninterruptible power supply (UPS) unit, such as an APC Back-UPS model
  • An Ethernet (also known as a Cat5E or 10/100) patch cable that is at least 25 feet long with RJ45 (also known as Cat5E or 10/100 Ethernet) connectors (if your room has wired network access)
  • All original computer system manuals and discs (this is very important for troubleshooting and repair in the event of a system crash)

Note that these are recommendations only. Students may do just fine if they have equipment that is below these specs. Many students also bring mobile devices such as laptops, smart phones, iPods, or tablets to campus and connect to our wireless network with them.

See the other question on this page for recommended laptop info.

Link to this section of the page.

Is it better to have a Mac or PC?

OWU Information Services fully supports both Macs and PCs, and the faculty have the choice to use either. You’ll find that a majority use PCs with certain departments, such as Fine Arts and Chemistry are almost exclusively Macs. Nearly all public-access (lab) machines run Windows 7 Professional. Your computer choice is your personal preference, and all kinds of computers–including Linux–are welcome on campus. Macs, PCs, and most Linux distributions are able to effectively utilize University computing resources.

Link to this section of the page.

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