Single Board Computer with Windows 10: What to Know

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When it comes to single board computers, there is no shortage of available options, and though it may take some research and a bit of time spent scratching your head over different features, you’ll more than likely be able to find a board to suit your diverse needs. One of the aspects to consider is the operating system – do you want to run Windows, Linux, Android, or something else? Each has its own benefits, but today we’re going to focus in on one and talk about some of the things you need to consider when using Windows on an SBC.

First, you might want to look into running Windows 10 IoT Core, which is a lighter weight system optimized for embedded devices. This route is an advantageous one to take as it gives you access to the Universal Windows Platform (UWP), which allows you to write one set of code and then run it across many different types of devices.

It’s equally important to look into the BSP and confirm that Windows will actually run on the board you’ve chosen, especially since Windows support for ARM architecture is relatively new. If you are running into issues in this area, you could go for an x86 based board like the Intel Joule to ensure wider support, since Windows has historically been used on x86 systems.

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You’ll also have to take into account whether or not you want your setup to have a display, because that will affect your memory requirements. Without a display, 256MB RAM will suffice. If you do need a display, you’ll want to go for 512MB RAM.

SBC Running Windows 10: Driver Support

Finally, it is crucial to take driver support into consideration. This step is particularly important for SBCs running Windows since drivers are not as common for peripherals, simply because Windows hasn’t been a part of the SBC ecosystem as long as other operating systems have. Be sure to double check support before you fully commit to a board – you wouldn’t want to miss out on certain board features you originally anticipated using.

Single Board Computer Operating Systems

While there may not be quite as many options for Windows on SBCs as there are for other operating systems, you’ve still got a healthy selection available to you, and SBCs supporting Windows are fortunately becoming more common. Windows also enables tons of software since you can use UWP programs, which adds an element of simplicity to development since you can build and test these programs on a normal PC and then move them to your embedded hardware. As long as you know your SBC has the support it needs when it comes to drivers and board support packages, using Windows as your operating system just might be the right choice for you.

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