Windows 10 is now the de facto standard operating system for modern PCs. As support for Windows 7 ends, and Windows 8.1 is particularly unpopular, the number of installations for Windows 10 is likely to only grow.
It could even be the last numbered version of Windows that Microsoft will sell, with constant updates that make Windows 10 today a completely different OS from the one originally released.
However, there are two main versions of Windows 10 – Home and Professional. If you’re in a situation where you have to choose between Windows 10 Pro and Windows Home, you should be aware of these differences.
This is probably the most obvious difference between Windows 10 Pro and Home. This is probably the reason most people want to know how the versions differ. After all, Windows 10 Pro is much more expensive than Home.
Most people never really come across the price of Windows 10, mainly because they either got a free upgrade from earlier versions or because it was included with their new computer. This means that the price is hidden in the total purchase price.
Windows 10 Pro comes with Microsoft’s encryption package known as BitLocker. This allows the computer to completely encrypt its drives, which means that no one can read the information on those drives without your encryption key.
BitLocker requires the computer to have hardware known as a Trusted Platform Module (TPM), which will almost certainly be on any professional computer.
Windows 10 Home doesn’t include BitLocker at all, but that doesn’t mean you have to say goodbye to data security on your home computer. You can install third-party solutions that protect your information with strong encryption
Encryption is probably something that most users really only need for selected files and not the entire drive.
Remote Desktop Features
Windows 10 Home doesn’t come with the full Microsoft Remote Desktop toolbox. Your home computer can be controlled via remote desktop, for example, through Microsoft support. However, you cannot take control of another computer from your home computer.
This is actually a painful loss for home users, as the remote desktop features are quite useful even for non-professional users. However, there are many third-party solutions that you can use to add remote desktop functionality back to your computer system.
Even if you’ve never heard of the term virtual machine, you’ve almost certainly used this technology in some way. A virtual machine is a computer that only exists in software. You have a host computer, which is a regular computer that runs an operating system directly on its hardware, which then acts as a host for a virtual computer. This is a simulated computer that looks like a real computer in terms of the software running on it.
There are many different use cases for virtual machines, but these days, dozens or hundreds of virtual servers are usually running on large computers in the data center. The same goes for professional workstations, which can use virtual machines for a variety of specialized purposes.
Virtualization is so important that modern processors have built-in special features that make virtualization faster and more efficient. The point is, the software you use to virtualize needs to know about these features in order to use them. Windows 10 Professional has built-in virtualization technology so those who need to run virtual machines can take advantage of their trendy professional processors.
As you’d expect, Windows 10 Professional has these optimizations enabled, but Windows 10 Home doesn’t. This does not mean that home users cannot use virtual machines. You can simply use a utility like the excellent Oracle VirtualBox to launch personal virtual machines seamlessly.
The biggest difference between Windows 10 Pro and Windows Home is what is commonly referred to as enterprise features. Basically, these are all the special functions that are most useful for large companies.
They include a range of management and administration tools that IT departments use to make their work easier. They can force corporate updates, restrict the types of applications that employees can run, and generally control their computer systems.
Most of these features are missing from Windows 10 Home, and for the most part, home users won’t miss them. There are several tools, such as the Group Policy Editor, that were present in older home versions of Windows that we are missing, but in general they are not relevant for most users.
How much memory do you need in your computer? Most home users are quite happy with 8GB to 16GB of RAM Even avid users are more than happy with the 32GB of RAM So you’re probably not too worried about the fact that Windows 10 Home has a 128GB RAM support limit. It will take some time before the average office or even a gaming machine reaches this limit.
Windows 10 Pro, on the other hand, supports a staggering 2 terabytes of RAM This is physically possible depending on your hardware, but who needs that much memory?
Two examples are high-performance workstations that run complex simulations or display detailed graphics. Computers that have many CPU cores and run multiple virtual machines may also need these kinds of RAM numbers.
While in practice few computers require 2 TB of RAM, many professional computers require more than the 128 GB that Home allows.
Dual Socket Motherboards
Title: ASUS WS C621E Sage Extreme supports two physical workstation processors.
Almost every computer in existence now has multiple CPU cores inside. Quad-core computers are pretty much the standard these days, and the number is steadily increasing.
All versions of Windows 10 support more cores than you can fit in a CPU today, but Windows 10 Home can only fit one physical CPU. So if you want to run a motherboard with two physical processors in it (a dual-processor motherboard), you’ll have to fork out for the Pro version.
Which one is right for you?
If you have to choose which version of Windows 10 to buy, what to do?
If you’re actually a home user who is just browsing the web, playing video games, and running with little performance in Office, then that’s fine. There is no performance difference between Home and Professional. All of your applications will work equally well in both versions on the same hardware.
If you’re building a professional PC with hardware specifications that go beyond what Home supports, then the choice is also obvious. However, beyond that, everything will be very specific to your case. If you work for a company that wants your personal computer to be part of the business, you might want Pro.
It’s very important to consider whether you can’t find any of the required features that are exclusive to Windows 10 Pro with third-party software. There are often free utilities that you can simply download to restore some of the features you cut from Home. This makes it unnecessary to pay a significantly higher price.
Let us know in the comments below how you made the decision to choose between Windows 10 Pro and Home.