What is Windows 10 Pro N?
The “N” editions of Windows 10 include the same functionality as other editions of Windows 10 except for media-related technologies. Windows Media Player, Skype, and certain preinstalled media apps are not included in the N editions (Music, Video, Voice Recorder).
In N editions of Windows 10, you must install other software from Microsoft or other companies to have this communication functionality; to play or create audio CDs, media files, and video DVDs; to stream music; and to take and store pictures.
Cortana, Windows Hello, and PDF viewing in the new Edge browser require Windows Media files that are not included in N editions. Additionally, some websites and software use Windows Media-related files that aren’t included in N editions, such as Windows Store apps and Microsoft Office.
Windows 10 Pro N Feature
Windows Media Player user experience
Enables Windows Media Player features, such as the ability to play media files and audio CDs, manage media in a library, create a playlist, provide media metadata (including album art), create an audio CD, transfer music to a portable music player, and play streamed content from the website.
Windows Media Player ActiveX control
Exposes methods and properties for manipulating multimedia playback from a webpage or an app.
Windows Media Format
Provides support for the Advanced Systems Format (ASF) file container, the Windows Media audio and video codecs, basic network streaming capability, and digital rights management (DRM).
Windows Media DRM
Enables the secure delivery of protected content for playback on a computer, portable device, or network device.
Media sharing and Play To
Enables music, pictures, and videos on a networked computer to be shared with other computers and devices on the same network. Also enables computers to find those kinds of files on the network.
Provides support for content protection, audio and video quality, and interoperability for DRM.
Windows 8.1 Portable Devices (WPD) infrastructure
Communicates with attached media and storage devices, including devices that support the Media Transfer Protocol.
MPEG, WMA, AAC, FLAC, ALAC, AMR, Dolby Digital audio, and Opus codecs
Enable playback of digital audio content such as MP3, WMA, MPEG-2 audio, AAC, FLAC, ALAC, AC-3, and Opus.
VC-1, MPEG-4, H.264, H.265, H.263, and VP9 codecs
“Standards-based codec components” that enable Windows 10 software experiences such as Windows Media Player to support activities that include the playback and creation of multimedia files that are encoded with standards-based codecs.
A preinstalled app that plays digital music.
Movies & TV
A preinstalled app that plays digital video.
A preinstalled app for recording sounds.
A preinstalled app for messaging and communications.
Effect on other features
The following Windows 10 features aren’t removed in N editions but are affected by having the media technology removed:
- App Sync: This feature doesn’t work.
- OneDrive and Photos: These apps can’t play videos.
- Xbox: Some functionality that is associated with this app, such as Game DVR, doesn’t work.
- Home Group: Integrated media sharing through streaming features doesn’t work.
- Webcam: This feature doesn’t work.
- Windows Portable Devices: There’s no support for media synchronization, image acquisition, or file browsing.
- Windows 10 camera devices: Cameras that use the picture transfer protocol (PTP) don’t work.
- Sound Recorder: Recordings are limited to the WAV format.
- Alarms and Clock: Alarm and timer sounds don’t play.
- Group Policy for removable disks: This feature doesn’t work in N editions of Windows 10 Pro.
- Cortana Personal Assistant: Speech interaction with Cortana doesn’t work.
- Windows Store media content: Audio and video content that’s obtained through the Store can’t be played. Also, preview of audio or video content in the Store doesn’t work.
- Wireless Display: This feature doesn’t work.
- PDF Viewing in Edge: This feature doesn’t work.
- Windows Hello: This feature doesn’t work.
- Toast Notifications: Sounds that are set for toast notifications don’t work.
- Required processor: GHz processor or faster
- Required memory: 1 GB RAM for 32-bit; 2 GB for 64-bit
- Required hard disk space: Up to 20 GB available hard disk space
- Required video card: 800 x 600 screen resolution or higher. DirectX® 9 graphics processor with WDDM driver
- Required connectivity: Internet access (fees may apply)
- Other system requirements: Microsoft account required for some features. Watching DVDs requires separate playback software
- Additional system requirements: You must accept the enclosed License Terms, also at Microsoft License Terms. Activation required • Single license • 32- and 64-bits on USB 3.0 media included