Hardware Recommendations for Desktops, Laptops, and Tablets

To fully utilize the special volume discounts the University has negotiated with Dell, HP, and Apple; the Office of Information Technology recommends that your purchase computers from these companies. Below are the recommended specifications for each different type of computer: Laptop/Notebook, Desktop, and Tablet.

For personalized recommendations related to special software or hardware requirements that remain compatible with the University’s networking environment, please contact the OIT Support Center. They will open a work order and advise you on the hardware that will best suit your needs. 

Departmental Purchases

  • Computer purchases must be made through the University’s Purchasing Department
  • The Office of Information Technology has refurbished computers starting at $100 dollars.
  • We currently recommend Windows 10 Enterprise as the operating system for office PCs. Windows 10 Home is not supported on the University Network. All computers will be updated automatically through Microsoft System Center.
    • Updates are run on the last Friday of every month at 2 a.m. please leave your computer on so that it can receive and install these updates during non-business hours.
  • We advise purchasing a computer that is more powerful than you actually need so that your computer can keep up with technology changes.

What Type of Computer Will Work Best for Me?

Deciding what type of computer to purchase is difficult, as each different type has pros and cons in different situations.


Pros: Portability
Cons: Higher cost compared to a desktop
Ultra-light portable laptops are often less expensive, but can lack features such as Ethernet ports and CD/DVD drives.
If you often travel for work, consider a lighter laptop with a smaller battery, and a complete accident care insurance plan.


Pros: Powerful, flexible, customizable and upgradable.
Cons: Lack of Portability
Desktops give more power and are less expensive than equivalent power laptops.


Pros: Portability, battery life, some have cellular (LTE) communication ability
Cons: Less powerful than Laptop/Notebooks or Desktop computers
Tablets are good for web access, e-mail, and basic Microsoft Office use. They are not yet powerful enough to be seen as a replacement for a Desktop or Laptop/Notebook.

What Are the Recommended Hardware Specifications for PC?


A quad-core processor (Intel i5) is the minimum recommended processor for Laptop/Notebooks and Desktop computers. The Intel i7 processor is preferred.

Memory (Ram)

RAM is the working memory of your computer. The higher the RAM, the more multi-tasking the computer can do. For 64-bit Operating systems: 8GB minimum, 16GB preferred.

Hard Drive

OIT currently recommends a 256 GB SSD (Solid State Drive) for better OS and software performance.

Operating System

Windows 10 Enterprise 64-bit is the preferred Operating System for PC.

Wireless Network Card

802.11 b/g/n wireless card is recommended for all Laptop/Notebooks and Tablets. NOTE: Wireless Network Cards are not allowed on Desktop machines. They must be plugged in to an Ethernet cable in order to receive software and automatic Windows Updates.


The minimum recommend warranty is 3 years5 years is preferred.

What Are the Recommended Hardware Specifications for Mac?

Memory (Ram)

8GB minimum, 16GB preferred

Hard Drive

256GB SSD (Solid State Drive)

Operating System



You must add the AppleCare warranty to your hardware purchase.


University-owned equipment may be serviced and repaired by the IT department. Both warranty and non-warranty services are provided for Dell, HP, and Apple computers.


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Article ID: 117255
Tue 9/29/20 10:32 AM
Wed 5/11/22 4:38 PM

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