Hardware Requirements for Analytics + Data Science Bootcamps

Jan 14, 2022
Mandy Arola

Students must provide their own computer for classes at NSS and having the right computer and other equipment will make a difference in your experience. You can use a Mac, Windows, or Linux laptop for our Data Analytics or Data Science Bootcamps.

Looking for hardware requirements for another program you can find them here: Software Engineering or Web Development

Computers

First, a couple of overall thoughts on computers.

  1. If you are in a remote cohort, you can use a desktop computer or a laptop. If you are in an in-person cohort, you will need a laptop.

  2. You do not need a new computer for NSS - many machines manufactured since 2015 will work just fine although some may benefit from upgrades (in particular upgrades to RAM).

  3. Even if you are going to acquire a computer it need not be a brand-new machine. Many students acquire used or refurbished machines.

  4. You can use either a Mac or Windows computer that meets our requirements as outlined below. 

  5. You may NOT use a Chromebook, tablet (such as an iPad), a phone, or any other device that is not listed. The reason for this requirement is simple. The software we will use in the course will not run on devices other than those listed. Other devices simply will not work.

  6. Using a Mac? We do not recommend an Apple M1 processor due to software compatibility issues.

  7. Using Linux? While we do allow Linux use, it is an operating system for advanced users only. If you do not have prior experience with Linux, you should use Windows or MacOS. NSS staff are not able to support Linux operating systems.

You'll find more specific requirements for computer (memory, hard drive, cpu, and operating system) for each program below.

Data Analytics Bootcamps

You will need the latest operating system for your computer. You are required to have either Windows, MacOS, or a recent Linux distribution. If using MacOS or Linux, you will need to install VMWare Fusion Player Personal - Use License Edition (if the free version becomes unavailable, the cost of the software is approximately $150). If using VMWare Fusion, NSS will provide Windows software for the duration of the program.

Memory

16GB minimum

Hard Drive

SSD is preferred
500GB minimum

(or 256 GB and an external hard drive)

 

CPU

Intel i5 minimum
Intel i7 or i9 preferred
(M1 NOT recommended)

 

 

Operating Systems

Windows 10 (Home or Pro)


Mac: High Sierra, Mojave, or Catalina

Linux: recent distribution

Data Science Bootcamp

Memory

16GB minimum

Hard Drive

SSD is preferred
500GB minimum

(or 256 GB and an external hard drive)

 

CPU

Intel i5 minimum
Intel i7 or i9 preferred
(M1 NOT recommended)

 

 

Operating Systems

Windows 10 (Home or Pro)


Mac: High Sierra, Mojave, or Catalina

Linux: recent distribution

Additional Required Equipment

Your laptop should include a microphone, speakers, and a webcam that are compatible with Zoom. If you're using a laptop or a desktop computer where these are not built-in, you will need to purchase separate hardware.

Backup Drive

You will be learning amazing things during your time at NSS. However, with great power comes responsibility. You will probably be pushing your computer harder than you ever had before. You may also spill water or coffee on your computer while in class. You may drop your computer, or drop something on it. You may inadvertently run a command that permanently deletes very important files that make your operating system work.

Because of these common issues that students have, we strongly urge you to buy a backup drive for your computer to ensure that you don’t lose the investment you’ve made in your computer and your time at NSS. A 500 GB to 1 TB external drive is more than enough for most people, but the actual size will depend upon how much data you have to backup. Additionally we recommend using backup software to ensure that your work is automatically backed up to this drive on a regular basis. Using the built-in utilities is a great place to start (e.g. Time Machine for Mac, or Backup and Restore for Windows).

Recommended Additional Hardware

These items are not critical for success in our programs, but many students find them convenient to have.

  • Second monitor (for remote students)
  • External keyboard
  • External mouse
  • Headphones

Video Conferencing (for remote students)

In addition to meeting the hardware requirements for your computer you must have a high speed Internet connection capable of supporting video conferencing software. We strongly recommend joining a Zoom test meeting to verify that your connection and hardware meet this requirement. While either headphones or speakers are sufficient for this course, use of headphones is highly encouraged if you join from an environment with a lot of background noise.

Administrator Rights

You must have administrator privileges on your computer. This means you should be able to install, uninstall, and configure software, and you should be able to make changes to the computer's operating system settings.

Know Your Computer

Whatever computer and operating system you use, it is your responsibility to understand how to use the system. This includes installing software, running applications, navigating files and folders, and changing system settings.

 

Still have questions? Drop a comment or connect with us through our contact page.

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