Not sure how I missed this last Friday, but Microsoft released the Office 2010 system requirements. Long story short, if you can run Office 2007, you can run Office 2010.

Can I use Office 2010 on the same hardware I’m using to run Office 2007?

In most cases, yes! CPU and RAM requirements for Office 2010 are the same as for Office 2007, so if your computer meets the Office 2007 system requirements, you can run Office 2010. A graphics chipset will help boost the performance of certain features and disk footprint has increased (more on these points later), but as general rules:

  • If your current computer can run Office 2007, it can run Office 2010.
  • If you're purchasing a new laptop or netbook, it can run Office 2010.
  • If you have a computer with a multi-core processor, it can run Office 2010 even faster.
  • If your computer is currently running Office 2003, it's possible that it can run Office 2010 (check the requirements to be sure).

Office 2010 doesn’t have "recommended" requirements. The reason for this is that customers have told us that understanding hardware requirements can be confusing, and the difference in meaning between "minimum" and "recommended" requirements isn't all that clear ... By including [only] minimums, we've tried to make the hardware requirements as clear as possible.

Blah, blah, blah :) ... Anyway. The minimum system requirements are:

Processor: 500 MHz
RAM: 256 MB
Disk space: ??? (He notes that it's gone up by 512 MB on apps and 1-1.5 GB on the suites)
Supported 32-bit OS, 32-bit Office 2010: Windows 7, Vista with SP1, XP with SP3, Server 2008, Server 2003 R2 with MSXML 6.0
Supported 64-bit OS, 32-bit Office 2010: Windows 7, Vista with SP1, XP with SP3, Server 2008, Server 2003 R2 with MSXML 6.0
Supported 64-bit OS, 64-bit Office 2010: Windows 7, Vista with SP1, XP with SP3, Server 2008

There is also a graphical processing unit (GPU) requirement on the "full" system requirements because of new graphical capabilities around Excel charts and PowerPoint effects. For this, you will need a DirectX 9.0c compliant graphics processor with 64 MB video memory. Such processors were "widely available in 2007," according to Microsoft. All netbooks comply, so no worries there. (And if you don't have it, fear not, Office 2010 will still work.)