System Requirements and Device Support#
Minimum System Requirements#
The following represents the minimum system resources required to operate N.I.N.A.
- A dual-core x64 CPU
- 2GB of RAM
- Windows 7 (64 bit) or later, however Windows 10 is highly recommended
- 250MB of free disk space without the optional SkyAtlas image data (1.5GB with)
- .NET Framework 4.7.2 Runtime (included with Windows 10 April 2018 Update (build 1803) and later)
Some users have reported successful operation of N.I.N.A. on small, low-power embedded systems such as the Intel Compute Stick and similar platforms. As expected, experiences will vary in such resource-constrained environments. Technically, N.I.N.A. should be able to run on a single core, but this will certainly lead to a highly undesirable experience and is certainly not recommended. However, if forced to choose between the two, more RAM is desirable over CPU power.
Recommended and Optional support software#
The functionality of N.I.N.A. shines through when paired with a supporting cast of other applications. Please consider the items in the following lists to access the full breadth of N.I.N.A.'s capabilities.
- ASCOM 6.4 framework (recommended)
- PHD2 Guiding (recommended)
- Any of several supported plate solving applications (recommended)
- Any of several supported planetarium applications (optional)
- SkyAltas image data (optional)
Direct (native) camera support#
N.I.N.A. can directly interface with a wide range of popular cameras without the need for an intermediate ASCOM driver. Direct camera control is recommended over accessing the camera through ASCOM for performance reasons and to access additional camera controls that cannot be manipulated through ASCOM.
Certain older Nikon DSLRs require a serial shutter cable for bulb exposures. Please consult your camera's documentation regarding its requirements for long exposure operation using a USB or other remote cable.
The list of supported cameras can change and expand as N.I.N.A. developers gain access to relevant hardware or support is contributed.
ASCOM Device Support#
Astronomy-related equipment often has an ASCOM driver for it. N.I.N.A. supports accessing the following types of devices through their associated ASCOM drivers, as long as the drivers are fully compliant with the relevant ASCOM frameworks. Cameras that lack direct support in N.I.N.A. but do have an ASCOM driver may also be utilized this way. The following ASCOM device classes are supported:
- Mounts (aka "Telescopes")
- Filter Wheels
- Weather data (ASCOM ObservingConditions)
Be aware that ASCOM drivers that are provided by their vendor in a 32 bit-only form will not be accessible by a 64 bit N.I.N.A. or any other 64 bit ASCOM client application. If this is the case for you, then the 32 bit version of N.I.N.A. must be installed.
A note to ASCOM driver developers
If it has not already been done, please consider making both 32 and 64 bit varieties of your driver(s) available to your users or customers, and ensure that the driver passes all ASCOM Conformance tests. Please refer to the relevant documentation on ASCOM's website for more information.
N.I.N.A. supports interfacing directly with PHD2 to monitor the status of guiding and to effect actions such as dithering. Telemetry from PHD2 also can be displayed inside the Imaging tab. If desired, N.I.N.A. can automatically launch PHD2. Currently, PHD2 is the only external guiding application that N.I.N.A. supports.