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FreeSurfer System Requirements

Freesurfer is available for the Linux and Mac OS X operating systems. It can also be used on Windows with VirtualBox (but runs a bit slower). The download page lists the supported platforms. Matlab is required to run the FS-FAST component of Freesurfer (but Matlab is not required to run the reconstruction utilities).

A 2GHz or faster processor, at least 4GB of RAM, and a 3D graphics card (with a GPU and its own graphics memory) with accelerated OpenGL drivers, is recommended. Freesurfer is highly CPU and memory intensive (and moderately disk intensive), so concentrate on boosting those performance aspects (more memory is better...8GB is highly recommended!). Most modern video graphics card will perform fine, but be aware that graphics cards that use CPU memory as video memory will have a noticeably slow redraw rate. CUDA v3.2, compute capability 1.3 or higher, and the current NVIDIA driver are recommended to run GPU-optimized functions in FreeSurfer (although GPU-optimized functions are optional). A 17" (or greater!) monitor is also recommended.

If you're running Freesurfer on a server, then allocate 4GB of memory to your job.

Freesurfer requires about 8.5GB of disk space for the full installation, which includes the Freesurfer binaries, support libraries, the MINC toolkit, and sample MRI data.

The volume and surface data files produced by Freesurfer for a typical subject (assuming two structural MRI scans of source data) consume about 370MB of disk space. The full tutorial dataset is 18GB.

From post to Freesurfer list by Nick Schmansky, 2013-04-24, regarding suggested specs for a Linux box