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CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X5 Hardware Requirements

Now that CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X5 has been released, I’ve been bombarded by questions via phone and e-mail. As today is our designated “hardware” day for the blog, I’m going to focus on answering some questions related to the hardware requirements for CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X5. If you have more questions on today’s topic, please post as a comment to the blog rather than e-mailing me. That way I can post a comment that answers the question for everyone. In the upcoming days, I’ll address other areas on days most appropriate to those topics. Let’s first look at the system requirements that Corel has listed for CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X5.

  • Microsoft® Windows® 7, Windows Vista®, Windows® XP, with latest service packs installed (32-bit or 64-bit editions)
  • Intel® Pentium® 4, AMD Athlon™ 64 or AMD Opteron™
  • 512 MB RAM (1 GB recommended)
  • 750 MB hard disk space (1 GB for typical installation without content). Up to 6GB needed to install extra content
  • Mouse or tablet
  • 1024 x 768 screen resolution (768 x 1024 on a Tablet PC)
  • DVD drive
  • Microsoft® Internet Explorer® 7 or higher

Let’s start with the biggest hardware requirement. You need a PC. If you have a Mac, you will need to install Windows on it to run CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X5. Mac users, I am simply the messenger so please don’t shoot me as I have nothing to do with this decision. If you do run it on a Mac, Corel won’t officially support it. That said, it does seem to work quite well using Boot Camp or Parallels to run Windows.

As I said, you must have Windows. Specifically it will run on Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7. It will work on both 32-bit and 64-bit flavors of Windows. Corel does specify you need all of the latest service packs for Windows. While it isn’t spelled out, CorelDRAW does require the latest release of the .NET services which are part of more recent service packs.

CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X5 is a 32-bit application and there is no native 64-bit version available. While that could certainly change, I wouldn’t expect to see a native 64-bit version until at least the next release since it is a major overhaul.

Next up is the processor. I’m guessing most of your couldn’t name what processor you have so this requirement is a bit of a mystery to you. Let’s forget the processors listed and let’s talk about the real requirement. You must have a processor that supports the SSE2 instruction set. If you don’t, you won’t even be allowed to install CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X5. I told you how to find out if you had SSE2 in a post last weekend on the CPU-Z Processor Information Utility. Just so you know, these instructions have been available in processors for five years or more. Why is this a requirement? CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X5 has supported for multiple threads. This means a feature can take advantage of multi-core processors or even hyperthreaded processors to perform a function much faster. A perfect example is the Save feature. As soon as you start saving a file, you can immediately start doing other things as the save is performed in the background. How many times in the past have you sat there staring at the screen waiting for a file to finish saving? I know it happened way too often for me. My computer (described in detail) has four cores each of which can run two separate threads. When CorelDRAW saves, it can now split the load in eight ways.

Next up, it says 512 MB of RAM is required and 1 GB is recommended. Sorry, those numbers are unrealistic. While they might technically be the minimum, I think you need a minimum of 2 GB to even consider using any graphics software these days. Personally I’d recommend any new computer to have a 64-bit operating system and as much memory as possible. For much on this subject, read my post Memory and CorelDRAW. In that post, you’ll notice I talk about the useless Memory setting in CorelDRAW X4. It has been removed and already a few users are concerned that it isn’t there. As I’ve said many times, it didn’t do anything!

As we move down the list, the requirements says you need a minimum of 750 GB of hard drive space. If you buy the boxed version, the full install takes around 7 GB of space. So while you can skimp, I sure hope you have a lot more space available.

You have to be able to point, so you need a mouse or tablet. Corel has added touch support though this is something very few users will be using in the near future since it is rare that someone has a computer with touch support. Just like CorelDRAW X4, you must have a DVD drive as the boxed version includes the software on a DVD. I can’t imagine a computer without a DVD drive, but I covered a very good (and inexpensive) Samsung DVD Drive recently.

The last requirement is Internet Explorer 7 and honestly this is something Corel shouldn’t require. Many users prefer other browsers, such as Firefox or Opera. Yet CorelDRAW relies upon Internet Explorer to load any Web content.


I’ll answer one other question that isn’t related to hardware as I’ve been bombarded with questions about this. In the latest newsletter, I provided a coupon code (UNLEASHEDFEB) to save money on CorelDRAW X5. The code included does absolutely, positively work as shown in the newsletter. I have placed a test order myself. The folks at Corel who provided me with the coupon have also tested it. Make sure you type it in all caps, lowercase won’t work. Other than the letters, do not include quotes or parenthesis. Should you copy and paste, you might get an extra space. That will cause it to fail so make sure to remove anything other than the code itself. If you live outside of North America, it might not work. I honestly don’t know. If you live in North America and it isn’t working, the only suggestion I can give you is to make sure you entered it as described above and keep trying. Like I said, I tried it myself and I know it does work.

About Foster D. Coburn III

Foster D. Coburn III is the author of thirteen books on CorelDRAW, the latest being CorelDRAW X6 Unleashed. He has been a contributor to numerous magazines. Foster has taken many projects, including this Web site and many more, from the early design stage through to a finished piece. He has been a featured speaker at many graphics and Web conferences.

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  1. Question: I’m experiencing regular, repeated crashes when attempting to print from X5. I was under the impression this was a fully functioning 30-day trial. Am I mistaken?

    Otherwise, I am, for the most part, rather pleased with the improvements.

  2. Yes, the trial is fully functioning for 30 days. Personally I’ve not had any problems printing a variety of documents. Is there one specific document or many? Do these documents have some type of common element? All to one printer or to multiple printers?

  3. I thought I would add some additional information to me provided by Gabor, a CorelDRAW power user.

    The actual processors with SSE2 support are Pentium 4, Core Solo/Duo, Core 2 Solo/Duo/Quad/Extreme, Core i3/i5/i7, AMD Athlon 64/X2, Opteron, Phenom, Turion.

    Windows will name the processor in Control Panel > System if you don’t want to use the CPU-Z utility.

    SSE2 has been available since 2001 in Intel and since 2003 in AMD processors. This is more than five years for the mainstream, actually, nearly the double.

    Thanks Gabor!

  4. I just spent 20 minutes messing with about every option and setting availble and I am unable to duplicate the crash. It crashed six times yesterday and two today. I guess it must have healed itself!

    The more I play with X5 the more I’m really liking it!

    BTW, did you ever find a better font manager? I’ve tried a few but I always come back to Bitstream Font Manager.

  5. I am still testing font managers and will have a post in the near future with what I’ve chosen.

  6. I have installed X5 on a Win 7 Pro setup, it runs okay until I start to customize the buttons that I need on the screen. I know this changes the DRAWUIConfig.xml file. When I create new toolbars, exit Draw then try to restart it crashes. I’ve figured out that deleting the DRAWUIConfig.xml and restarting cures the problem but it’s not ideal, any ideas?

  7. Pawel, I don’t really have any specific answers for you. I’ve customized my workspace quite extensively without problem.

  8. font manager = font expert. Navigator is a toy compared to Font expert

  9. okay, memory usage wasn’t affecting anything (well done corel leaving it there unddocumented that it might have an affect only in the case of win98. Thats obvious markeing BSiting the user) and they thought to save as much of the rediculing by finally removing it(?) Why they also had to remove scratch disk settings?? … Might want to run windows from an ssd disk and dont want temp files in there, or might not have enough disk space in the system partition, or moreover i migh be using ramdrive and want my temp files to be using that …huh?

  10. and what percentage of memory corel actually utilises by default ?

  11. Question : i am not able to install corel draw x5 on my machine. Mymachine has AMD turion processor running win vista home premium on 3 GB RAM. Whenever I run setup a box of DOS command appears and then disappear in a fraction of a second. Then nothing happens.

  12. What are the different features of Corel draw?

  13. What are the different features of Corel draw?

  14. i have a mac
    and i want to install vmware fusion and i wonder if that will work good with coreldraw x5

  15. Joy,

    I don’t have a Mac for testing. I know users have reported successfully using Boot Camp and Parallels to run CorelDRAW on a Mac. If VMWare Fusion can successfully run Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7; it should be able to also run CorelDRAW. Before buying, you might want to install the trial version just to make sure.

  16. I try to open 46mb corel draw file saved in corelx3 version on a machine with processor i-7 with 64 bit windows-7 operating system, 8GB RAM and 1Tb Hard-Drive. I am trying it to open in Corel-X5 60 days trial version. But the file is not opening giving a message ” Out of Memory ” & Corel draw-x5 hangs what would be the reason. Please suggest how to open file. There is no Antivirus software loaded on the system & the file is checked for virus with Norton Internet Security -11 & quick heal from another system. But no Virus found in the File.

  17. Does the same file open in CorelDRAW X3? Is it loaded with color styles, saved views and/or styles?

  18. You know what I find funny. I just came from a search that had you talking about how 64bit OS’s were pointless and you don’t see them coming along for a long time. You also didn’t see the use for them. Granted this was a 2008 post… but that wasn’t that long ago (3 years).

    Now, you are recommending everyone have a 64bit OS with as much ram as possible.

    Why are so many people so reluctant to watch PC hardware grow? I remember when 200mhz was the top processor. People were saying it wouldn’t change for a long time because of FSB speeds. Not many months later that all got shattered. IRQ’s were a “bottle neck” that wouldn’t be crossed… shattered.

    I have ZERO bleeding edge computer gear and I’m a computer consultant… but you guys are hilarious.

  19. Oh, correct that… I didn’t see this post was 2010… so in less than 2 years this happened.


  20. Bogus, your comment seems pretty bogus. If you were basing a recommendation against a 64-bit operating system in 2008 then we are talking about the days before Windows 7 was released. It wasn’t a good idea because there were so few 64-bit drivers. This post says absolutely nothing against a 64-bit OS and it was written after Windows 7 came on the scene and we were already using a 64-bit version of Windows 7 in our office.

    Yes, things can change fast in the world of computers. That includes recommendations for what hardware and what operating system are best at any given time.

  21. Is Windows Starter suitable for Corel Draw Graphics Suite X5 ? as I’m not able to install that in Windows XP…

  22. I’ve not heard of “Windows Starter” so I’m not sure if it would work.

  23. owstarter isaslimmed down version of Windows for netbooks an Pads needing a lower specification, I would expect starter to struggle with X5

  24. Starter is a slimmed down version of Windows 7 used on Netbooks & Pads I would expect x5 to struggle on starter or only only allow a minimum instalation

  25. Has anyone had trouble with Corel shutting down randomly and/or shutting down when you click on print to send to your lazer

    Thanks for your time

  26. Brian, Corel the company is shutting down when you click print? Or do you really mean CorelDRAW, the software made by Corel Corporation? Since this happens when you print, I can almost guarantee fault lies with the driver for your printer (in this case a laser engraver).

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