The General Differences Between Windows 7 32-bit and 64-bit.

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Help and Support' started by Mitchell_A, Apr 9, 2010.

  1. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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    A Few of Your Questions Regarding Windows 7 32 and 64-bit answered.

    I see some of these questions asked quite frequently, so I thought I'd make a thread for clarification :)

    Starting with the bottom line:
    What’s the general difference?
    Well 32 and 64 bit is, in it's simplest form, a reference to the way your computers CPU (processor) uses and passes information, through both the FSB (bus) and OS itself. 64 bit has a wider memory space than 32 bit, hence being able to utilize more than 3.6 GB of RAM and provide performance benefits. For even more information: A description of the differences between 32-bit versions of Windows Vista and 64-bit versions of Windows Vista

    Can I upgrade from Windows 7 32-bit to 64-bit, and vice versa?
    Can you perform an "upgrade"? No. However, if your processor support 64-bit, you can backup and do a "clean installation" of Windows 7 64-bit.

    How Do I know what architecture of Windows I'm using?
    To check the architecture of your Windows 7, open your start menu, and proceed to type “system” into the search field (assuming you have Windows Search enabled), click the First result under “Control Panel”. What you should now see is basic information about your PC, including amount of RAM installed, the model of your CPU. Beside “System Type” will either be 32 or 64-bit operating system. If you don’t have Windows Search enabled, open the start menu, right click on “Computer” and select “Properties”.

    Should I install 32-bit or 64-bit?
    You can only install 64-bit if your processor is capable of it, furthermore, there will be no real benefits unless you have more than 3 GB of RAM, unless if you have programs that are specifically 64-bit only, and will not function on the 32-bit system. To check if your processor is 64-bit capable, run the Intel Processor ID Utility or the AMD Hyper-V Check Tool depending on whether you have an AMD or Intel processor. If you're unsure of whether you have an Intel or AMD processor, why are you reading this? ;)

    Will I be able to run 32-bit programs on my 64-bit PC? Vice Versa?
    Yes, compatibility is almost always maintained, though 64-bit optimized usually provide performance benefits on a 64-bit platform. But if you have a program made only for 64-bit systems, you will not be able to use the program on any 32-bit platform. For 64-bit systems, in your main drive (Usually C:\), there will be two folders: “Program Files” and “Program Files (x86)”, your 32-bit programs are installed in the second folder to avoid conflicts.

    What about drivers?
    Unfortunately, the same fate can't be met with drivers, if you have 32-bit drivers for a 64-bit PC, you'll need to go out searching for compatible 64-bit drivers. Same goes for vice versa.

    What is the memory limitation in 32-bit?
    The memory “limitation” isn’t really a limitation at all. If you have 4, 6, 12 GB or more RAM on a 32-bit system, it’s still “usable” just not by you for your programs, it’s typically used by graphics card and other overhead functions/devices. There is of course a way to make that RAM utilizable for your everyday programs, but I won’t post that here as it can cause conflicts and problems.

    If you have any further questions, please post away
    :cool:
     
  2. davison4

    davison4 New Member

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    Windows 7

    First of all thank u very much for this post. I am using windows 7 64 bit system and have bought a windows data recovery software of Stellar which is compatible with windows 7 32 bit. So, I was confused whether it will run at my system or not.


    But after reading this post I got the solution.

    Thanks a lot
     
  3. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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  4. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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    That is a clean installation, not an upgrade.
     
  5. Agent Data

    Agent Data Banned

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    Mitch,
    beg to differ - to say NO to upgrading will be confusing for many people - you can upgrade by clean installing 64 is the more accurate answer. Upgrading does not necessarily mean to be able to upgrade from within your old Windows desktop.
     
  6. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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    Oh whatever guys :p
    Most users that have stumbled upon this post won't be going into enough depth with their version of Windows to make the architectural switch. ;)
     
  7. davison4

    davison4 New Member

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    Windows 7

    Yes , me too think that this post is going to help a lot to reduce the confusion.

    As I already mentioned that I have used the Stellar Phoenix Windows data recovery software which is compatible with both windows 7 32 bit and 64 bit as well.
     
  8. aertiop

    aertiop New Member

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    this thread bring many useful tips. I thing these tips will be help me to know about proper computing. I will applied in my work.
     
  9. john3347

    john3347 Extraordinary Member
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    I realize that this thread is not current, but the subject matter is still current, so I am going to try to help clear up some "upgrade" confusion among some of the more rookie users.

    There are conflicting definitions to the term "upgrade" with reference to computer operating systems currently in use. Microsoft refers to upgrade as replacing ANY OS with a later OS. By this definition, you can upgrade from Windows 98 to Windows 7 if your computer is capable of running Windows 7. You cannot, however, perform an "in-place upgrade". An in-place upgrade is upgrading without wiping your old OS, formatting, and installing the new OS fresh. This definition is commonly called simply "upgrade" by the using public. The typical computer professional will tell you that you can only "upgrade" from Windows Vista to Windows 7. Microsoft will tell you that you can perform an "in-place upgrade" only from Windows Vista to Windows 7. These two seemingly conflicting procedures are one and the same. Only the names are changed to confuse the innocent. By these same definitions, Microsoft will tell you, "Sure, you can upgrade from Windows XP to Windows 7 if you have adequate hardware, but you must perform a clean install" (format and install fresh). The typical computer professional will tell you, "No, you cannot upgrade from XP to Windows 7, you must perform a clean install".

    If you are a novice and do not understand for sure which definition a person is using, better get it understood before you proceed.

    edit: Agent Data is alluding to this terminology conflict here in his response to a previous post.
     
  10. Agent Data

    Agent Data Banned

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    a word like "upgrade" (without specific context) will continue to confuse especially non-native speakers (forum visitors) and that is not exactly a novice issue! always throwing insults that easily?

    ever thought about that perspective?...
     
  11. john3347

    john3347 Extraordinary Member
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    WOW! I sincerely apologize to anyone who was offended by my use of the word "novice" to describe someone who may be unfamiliar with the English language computer vernacular. I POSITIVELY meant to be throwing insults at NO ONE!! I was merely cautioning, really anyone, to make sure that they knew which meaning of "upgrade" someone was using before proceeding with whatever project they may have been embarking on.

    Now, if whatever powers that be within the computer and IT industry would get together and everyone pull in the same direction, a single definition for "upgrade" could exist and there would be no confusion. Until that condition exists (lots of luck on that), you "better get it understood before you proceed"
     
  12. Mitchell_A

    Mitchell_A Excellent Member

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    To avoid further conflicts or flame-baiting, this thread is closed.
    It was not designed for someone who doesn't know the difference between an Upgrade and a Clean installation,
    As the title suggests, it was designed to inform people of "The General Differences Between Windows 7 32-bit and 64-bit."
    I will make revisions where I see fit.

    By all means, feel free to make a thread clarifying about these issues, and I will more than gladly make it a "sticky" thread.
     
  13. Bigred

    Bigred New Member

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    Hi I am tryring to run a disc for a recertification course I am taking and when I try to start it, it says The version of Windows I am running is not compatable. It says I need to see what version I am running, 32 or 64 bit. I am runningWindows 7, 64 bit. I tried to run the disc in "compatability mode" but I cannot find that option when I right click on the disc.

    Any idea how I can get this to play on my laptop??
     
  14. toolpusher

    toolpusher New Member

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    Hi

    Both my PC's have 4gb ram and used to run Win Vista 32bit. Knowing the 32 bit Win only handles 3.6 gb memory I upgraded my PC's to win 7 64 bit knowing that the 4gb would be utilised and I should get some increased performance. To be honest I never seen any increase in performance at all.

    I have now noticed that 64 bit uses double the length of memory address's that 32 bit does!! So far from increasing performance I will have decreased it slightly even though I am using the full 4 gb. Even If I upgrade both my PC's to 8 GB memory the max they can handle in reality it will be like using 32 bit machine that can handle 4gb . (if you see what I mean?)

    So is the whole 32 bit versus 64 bit a bit of a con really?

    Regards

    TP
     
  15. cybercore

    cybercore New Member

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    [​IMG]


    32-bit vs. 64-bit: More Bit, More Performance?


    Put to the test—both the 32-bit and 64-bit editions of Windows 7 on the same machine, with the exact same set of programs and drivers—and installed in the same order. Both installations were used for at least three days in order to ensure that the Windows Indexer, the Windows Superfetch, and other features would not interfere.


    Compressing a 1 Gbyte file into ZIP format
    [​IMG]



    3D Mark Vantage
    [​IMG]



    PC Mark Vantage
    [​IMG]



    Cinebench
    [​IMG]



    CRYSIS
    [​IMG]
     
  16. majarms

    majarms New Member

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    Re: Windows 7

    Still there may be a lot of things there might need a focus and need research on the upcoming issues as would also like to share that at month on 22nd Service Pack 01 for WIN7 is launch try to download and install if any issues let me know ill try to resolve your issue.
     
  17. NEWTON PEDROZA

    NEWTON PEDROZA New Member

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    [langtitle=pt]Re: Windows 7[/langtitle]

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    Aplica-se a todas as edições do Windows 7
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    Windows Update erro 80004002

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    Se o problema persistir depois de ter seguido os passos acima, vá para o site Microsoft Update Solution Center para tentar encontrar mais informações sobre o código de erro ou para solicitar suporte por e-mail.

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