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Student Laptop Requirement

All Stern students are required to have a laptop computer. The laptop requirement ensures that you will have access to the resources needed to successfully complete NYU Stern's program of study. 

If you will be purchasing a laptop for your time at NYU Stern. If you already own a laptop computer, or choose to select another model, please check that it meets our recommended configuration.

We always provide best-effort support to all student laptops even though we cannot provide advanced hardware support for laptops that do not have the Dell ProSupport warranty.

Our recommended specifications are meant to be able to last for a four-year period of study at NYU Stern. Many thin, lightweight Ultrabooks—such as the 2020 MacBook Air—use lower-powered processors in order to minimize power consumption and increase battery life. While these are fine for common tasks such as web browsing, playing videos, and word processing, they may struggle with more intensive tasks, such as working with large Excel files, and may start feeling less snappy after a couple of years unless you work on maintaining a clean system. provides a nice breakdown of the different levels of CPU performance to help you decide what's right for you

We highly recommend at least 8 GB of memory (RAM) and a solid state drive (SSD) for storage. Although more expensive per GB than traditional hard disk drives (HDD), solid state drives are much faster when powering on, opening files, and opening applications—replacing a HDD with an SSD is one of the best ways to improve the responsiveness of a system. Also, since they do not contain any moving parts, they have much lower failure rates than HDDs, especially with the amount of movement laptops are typically subjected to. We recommend filling no more than 80% of your drive for best performance, so plan your storage needs accordingly, either by upgrading or using an external drive to add more space.

While we recommend using either Windows 10 or macOS, it's fine if you think another operating system, such as Chrome OS is suitable for your needs. Please note that while we will do everything we can to support you, our testing and focus is primarily on supporting Windows and macOS.

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Recommended Software

See our list of other recommended software.

*Other operating systems such as Linux, ChromeOS, or Windows in other languages are OK too, but we do not test for compatibility and offer limited best-effort support

Recommended Hardware

  • Quad-core CPU (Intel Core i7 / Intel Core i5 or i7 G Series / AMD Ryzen 5, 7, or 9)
  • At least 8 GB Memory (RAM), 16 GB is preferred if running Excel Macros and Statistical software
  • At least 256 GB Solid State Drive (SSD) storage
  • 8+ hour battery life
  • 2 or more USB ports or an USB-C to USB 3.0 Adapter if your laptop has USB-C
  • 802.11n/ac Wireless Adapter
  • HDMI output or an HDMI adapter if your laptop has USB-C or Thunderbolt
  • 4-year warranty with accidental damage protection