To set up a gaming rig, you must consider many factors, including hardware and software specs.
These features must be capable of handling modern games and can be even better if they’re future-proof.
While many gamers focus on the gaming PC’s RAM, CPU, and GPU, they may not consider the operating system an essential factor.
However, the operating system can affect your gaming performance significantly.
For example, if your operating system is Windows 10, its version greatly matters since the version can affect the capabilities required for gaming.
What Is The Best Windows 10 Version For Gaming?
The best Windows 10 version for gaming is the Home version.
Windows 10 has several versions, but the only two versions for the general user, including gamers, are Windows 10 Home and Pro.
Other versions are designed for businesses and educational organizations and are unsuitable for home users.
Windows 10 Home and Windows 10 Pro fundamentally have the same features for general-purpose computing and hardcore gaming.
However, the Pro offers additional features required for business purposes, including Dynamic Provisioning, Trusted Boost, and Hyper-V.
However, these features aren’t necessary for gaming and won’t affect the gamer’s performance.
So, the best Windows 10 version for gaming is the Home, offering all the features that have made Windows the preferred operating system for gaming.
Windows 10 History And Features
Windows 10 has been around since 2015, following Windows 8.1 and offering massive improvements over the previous version.
The changes and improvements made in windows 10 were so significant that Microsoft decided to name it Windows 10 instead of Windows 9 to reflect the advancements in the new version.
It packs many new features, including Xbox-friendly capabilities, Cortana voice assistant, Windows 10 Mobile, Surface Hub, and many more.
It has a new user interface, giving the Start menu a new design.
The absence of the Start menu in Windows 8.1 was a big disappointment for many users, making navigation between applications difficult.
It also has a Continuum Feature, giving users a seamless experience across different devices.
For example, if you have a device that uses both a physical keyboard and a touchscreen, such as the Microsoft Surface, the OS can detect which interface you’re using and adapts the UI accordingly.
A new feature, Task View, offers a virtual desktop system, allowing the user to see all the open windows and switch between them.
This feature makes multi-tasking easier by allowing users to create multiple desktops.
System security is also improved through multi-factor authentication and support for biometric authentication on the Hello platform.
As a result, face and fingerprint recognition are supported on select devices.
Most importantly, Windows 10 provides more support for gaming by integrating with the Xbox ecosystem.
For example, Xbox users can form a network, play games on Xbox One, and record the last 30 seconds of the gameplay to share on Xbox Live or OneDrive.
In addition, Windows 10 has a new feature for gaming, the Game Bar, which you can access by pressing the Windows Key and G together.
You can use this feature to record your game, upload it on YouTube, or share it with your friends on social media.
It also allows developers to add new game features, such as Xbox Live functionality or wireless controllers.
Windows 10 Versions
In addition to all the added features, Windows 10 has different editions designed for home users and organizations.
The baseline editions, offered in retail outlets, include:
Windows 10 Home and Pro editions are basically the same, both designed for home users and consumers.
The only difference is that the Pro edition has additional features making it suitable for business settings.
The Home is the standard version for Windows 10, while the Pro version allows for remote desktop and domain connectivity, best for business and academic networks.
The Pro for workstations targets high-end computing tasks designed for developers and professionals.
There’s also the S Mode, which isn’t another Windows version.
Rather, it’s a mode that helps Windows run faster, extend the battery life, and increase security by limiting the operating system in different ways.
In addition to these versions, Microsoft has released different editions for organizations.
These include Education, Pro Education, Enterprise, and Enterprise LTSC (Long-Term Servicing Channel).
These versions are designed for organizations and academic settings, each offering different capabilities for different purposes.
It also had other versions like Mobile, Mobile Enterprise, and IoT Core, which are discontinued now.
Why Is Windows The Most Popular Operating System For Gaming?
Gamers can now play video games on various devices, from gaming consoles to Mac computers and even Linux systems.
However, Windows is still a leading force among these operating systems, being the most popular OS for gaming.
One of the main reasons for this popularity is the widespread adoption of Windows-powered computers worldwide.
Windows PCs are more affordable than Mac devices, making them a better choice for gamers and developers.
That’s why most games developed on platforms like Steam are offered for Windows.
In addition, Windows devices can have superior graphics cards that can handle the graphical demands of modern games.
The previous Windows versions, especially Windows XP and Windows 7, were wildly popular among gamers due to their stable performance.
Although Windows 8 and 8.1 weren’t particularly popular among gamers (and average users), they have long been replaced by Windows 10.
It’s an iteration that game developers use thanks to DirectX 12, the programming interface native to windows.
It offers tons of amazing features and capabilities, boosting gaming performance considerably.
The most important feature is that it enables graphics cards to use several CPU cores, making the game perform much better.
This feature isn’t found on any other operating system, making Windows superior to Linux and mac in terms of graphical processing capabilities.
As mentioned before, one of the most important features that make Windows 10 a great option for gaming is its ability to connect with Xbox Live, allowing users to access their accounts on a Windows 10 PC.
Windows 10 Home Vs. Pro
Windows 10 is great for gaming due to its great features and superior performance over other operating systems.
However, among the current Windows 10 versions, which one is better for gaming?
As mentioned earlier, although various Windows 10 versions exist, only the Home and Pro are suitable for individual consumers, including gamers.
The other versions are designed for organizations and schools and may be overkill for the demands of baseline users.
Now, we’re left with Windows 10 Home and Pro.
Windows Home has all the core capabilities suitable for the general user, including Outlook, Cortana, OneNote, Windows Hello login, the Office suite, and many others.
Users can also get 5 GB of free storage space on Microsoft’s Cloud Storage, OneDrive.
The Pro has all these features with extra capabilities for businesses.
Now, let’s consider the similarities and differences between the two Windows 10 versions.
Both of these versions are great for gaming.
You can sync all your Windows devices on your PC and have a seamless gaming experience.
If you have an Xbox One, you can use the Xbox Live feature to connect your devices to an internal network.
You can find Game Bar and Game Mode enabled by default on Windows 10 Home and Pro.
The Game Bar lets you view your hardware specs, such as CPU and GPU usage and performance.
It’s also configurable.
You can decide which features to add if you’re not a gamer and don’t want to use it for gaming purposes.
The game mode also allows you to improve gaming performance by freeing up space for gaming applications.
It’s a useful feature, particularly for lower-end devices, by giving more resources to gaming applications to avoid frame drops and lags.
They also improve the graphical performance by allowing 4K, the maximum screen resolution.
As mentioned, gamers can design games in a way that they use more CPU resources.
This way, you can have an enhanced gaming performance in Windows 10.
Although Windows 10 Home and Pro are similar in many ways, the main difference is that the latter is better for business purposes.
Domain binding and group policy management are among the most important ones.
However, the added features include far more than these:
A. Remote Desktop
Remote Desktop is an application you can only find on Windows 10 Pro.
This feature allows you to access your or another person’s computer remotely over the internet or a local network.
However, this version is only required for the Remote Desktop server.
The other clients connected to this server can run on Windows 10 Home.
While you can use this feature in gaming, third-party applications also offer this feature.
Bitlocker is a security option only offered on Windows 10 Pro.
It offers superior protection similar to Apple’s Filevault, allowing you to encrypt your entire disk and individual files.
Although this feature isn’t available on the Home Edition, it doesn’t mean you can’t have security and disk-level encryption.
Device encryption is a similar feature on Windows 10 Home to protect your device against unauthorized access.
It works by scrambling the data inside your drives.
Only the person with the encryption key and password can access the unscrambled data.
C. Memory Size
Since the Pro is designed for businesses, it allows for higher RAM capacities to support the demanding requirements of business applications.
As a result, the RAM size supported in Windows 10 Home increases to 2 TB in the Pro version.
This amount of RAM allows you to run several servers simultaneously.
D. Dynamic Provisioning
Businesses and companies typically have a corporate domain that each user has to connect to.
To do this, they must enable and disable different features to get the system ready to connect to the corporate domain.
Dynamic provisioning allows you to create these connections easily.
You simply create a profile through Dynamic Provisioning and save it on a USB drive.
When you insert the USB drive into the new device, it automatically configures it according to your desired settings.
These two versions differ in terms of price, as well.
The Home version will cost $139 on the Microsoft website, while the Pro is $199.99.
You can also upgrade from the Home to the Pro, but you need to pay an additional $99, driving the total cost to $238.
F. Trusted Boot
Windows 10 ensures you won’t get any malware infection immediately when you boot up your system.
The malware can hide even if it gets past the bootup process and infects your PC.
This malware, known as rootkits, has the same rights and privileges as the operating system, getting past the bootup, recording passwords, transferring private files, and hiding from anti-malware devices.
Although the Home doesn’t have Trusted Boot, it has the Secure Boot feature, which is perfect for the average user.
The Trusted Boot feature is better for organizations and business users.
Other features provided exclusively for Windows 10 Pro include:
- Windows update for business
- Take a Test (for educational organizations)
- Assigned access
- Windows Store for Business
- Group Policy
Now that the differences between the two Windows versions are clear, making a decision is easier.
As you can see, Windows 10 Home has all the performance and security features for consumer purposes.
These two versions are fundamentally the same, and all the added features that the Pro offers suit businesses.
Plus, some of the features offered in the Pro version are also available in the Home under different names and tailored for non-business users.
In fact, these features have made Windows famously great for gaming.
The gaming-specific features, like Xbox Live and the Game mode, are enough to favor the Home over the Pro.
In addition, you won’t face compatibility issues with the Home.
A game compatible with older versions will be playable on Windows Home without experiencing combability issues.
Even though the Pro allows for virtually connecting different devices with different operating systems, you can find several free third-party apps that offer the same capability.
Even the higher RAM capacity that the Pro supports isn’t necessary for gaming.
A total of 128 GB of RAM is more than enough for gaming, and you won’t need the 2 TB of RAM offered by the Pro.
Other Windows Requirements For Gaming
In addition to the Windows version to consider for gaming, you need to decide between two other factors: 32-bit vs. 64-bit.
These are CPU architectures that show how much data they can transfer and affect the Windows version you can choose.
A 32-bit CPU can transfer 32 bits, representing the processing power of the CPU.
Of course, a 64-bit CPU has twice the processing power of a 32-bit processor.
Similarly, the other parameters related to the CPU performance increase significantly in a 46-bit processor.
These include addressable space and RAM.
In addition, a 64-bit CPU can handle multi-tasking and stress testing.
Most importantly, a 64-bit CPU can accept 32-bit and 64-bit operating systems, while a 32-bit CPU can only handle 32-bit operating systems.
In addition, if you run a 64-bit application or game, you must have a 64-bit CPU.
That’s essential for gaming.
Most modern AAA games need a 64-bit operating system.
If you have a 32-bit operating system, you won’t be able to run most of these games.
As a result, if you’re building a gaming rig, you should go for the 64-bit processor.
In addition to all the above reasons, you can’t install Windows 10 on a 32-bit processor, and you’ll be stuck with Windows 7 and Linux.