Computer Requirements for Participating in Online Courses

To participate in online courses, you must have computer equipment that meets certain specifications (see Computer Specifications below). It is your responsibility to ensure you have equipment that meets these specifications before your program commences. If you have any questions about your equipment, please contact CDE Support (

You can get a sense of the adequacy of your computer equipment by performing two quick online tests, namely the Computer Power Test and the Computer Equipment Test (see below).


Computer Power Test

Close all unnecessary apps and tabs and go to the following website:  

Use the following table to interpret the Overall Score provided by the website: 

Overall Score 

Above 750 

350 - 750 

Below 350 

Interpretation of Computer Power 

Good to Excellent 

Adequate or Borderline (i.e., occasional issues with performance) 

Inadequate (i.e., computer equipment must be upgraded or replaced entirely) 


Computer Equipment Test 

Go to the following website: 

Important: If asked, please “allow” the website to access your camera and microphone.

After a brief delay, the website will present you with your equipment test results. You must get a check mark for Camera, Microphone, OS, and Bandwidth. (Ignore the results for Flash.) Here is a screenshot of what you should see:

Illustration of satisfactory results for online Computer Power Test. Icons for camera, microphone, OS, and Bandwidth are checked.

If you are not getting the four check marks shown above and believe that you should be, or if you are not sure what you need to do to attain four check marks, please contact CDE Support ( with a screenshot of your test results.


Computer Specifications

The table below outlines the technical details of the minimum specifications that your computer equipment must meet for you to participate in online courses.

Windows Specifications 
Operating System: Windows 10   
Processor:   2 GHz or faster  
Memory:  4 GB of RAM minimum  
Hard Drive:   10 GB free space minimum 
Browser:   Google Chrome recommended   
Email:   Students must use their StFX email address (provided by IT Services)  
Internet:   High Speed; Cable/DSL recommended  
Microphone:    Built in; USB microphone/headset recommended  
Webcam:   Built in or Windows supported webcam  
Mac Specifications  
Operating System:  Macintosh OS X 10.12 or later 
Processor:  2 GHz or faster  
Memory:  4 GB of RAM minimum 
Hard Drive:  10 GB free space minimum 
Browser: Google Chrome recommended
Email:  Students must use their StFX email address (provided by IT Services)
Internet:  High Speed Cable/DSL recommended 
Microphone:  Built in; USB microphone/headset recommended 
Webcam:  Built in or Mac supported webcam 
Chromebook Specifications 
Operating System:  Latest Chrome OS version – restart device to update automatically 
Processor:  1.6 GHz or faster 
Memory:  4 GB of RAM minimum
Email:  Students must use their StFX email address (provided by IT Services) 
Internet:  High Speed Cable/DSL recommended - requires USB-to-RJ45 hub   
Microphone :  Built in, USB (Chrome supported), or headset 
Webcam : Built in or Chrome OS supported webcam 
Mobile Specifications 
Note that mobile devices may not provide full functionality.  Mobile devices (Apple/iOS, Google/Android, Amazon/Fire) should be updated to the latest operating system. They generally work best with their corresponding browsers (i.e., Safari, Chrome, Silk, respectively).