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Windows 7: 64 bit installation question

15 Mar 2011   #1

Windows 7 Pro 64bit
 
 
64 bit installation question

If I rebuild my PC it might be a good time to install the 64 bit version. Would that be the best to get the most performance out of a new motherboard etc?

Also I have two drives. If I installed Windows 7 as 32 bit and now I got to 64 bit will I have access to my 2nd drive? There is no OS on it just files.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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15 Mar 2011   #2
Microsoft MVP

 

Changing bit-version won't affect your data HD. Unplug it during install.

To get the most out of 64 bit, you'll need more than 4gb of RAM.
32 bit vs 64 bit Comparison - Windows 7 Forums
64-bit More than just the RAM bit-tech.net
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Mar 2011   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Pretty good chance you would never know the difference given your hardware.

I'd investigate whether or not ALL of my programs would install and run properly on 64-bit. Most will, a few won't.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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15 Mar 2011   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64, XP Mode, W8.1 Preview VM - 7 Pro x64 second remote tower
 
 

As far as the need for more then 4gb that will depend mainly on the type of softwares you run. For large CAD projects and video capturing/editing, running multiple virtual machines those will tend to need over 4gb to avoid running out of resources.

Don't expect any large performance boost however when going from 4gb to say 8gb. The gain with the 64bit over 32bit is being able to use more and the more efficient data processing seen not any giant leap in overall speed.

The MS recommended is 2.5gb of memory while some run the 64bit 7 with only 2gb installed on older machines. As far as wiping C to see a clean install of the 64bit Windows you wouldn't need to unplug your second drive but will need to assign a new drive letter in the Disk Management tool for it once the 64bit installation is complete. That will initialize the drive and make it available for use.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Mar 2011   #5

Windows 7 Pro 64bit
 
 

Ok I think I will play it safe and use 32 bit. I would hate it for 1 small program not work in 64 bit and I did all that for nothing. The only memory intensive programs I use are Photoshop, AfterEffects, C4D and I have started to stream Netflix. Thanks everyone.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Mar 2011   #6

Windows 7 Ultimate x64, XP Mode, W8.1 Preview VM - 7 Pro x64 second remote tower
 
 

For Photoshop you would likely need the 64bit version as well as the others. When first planning out a new build you need to look over which new programs as well as existing ones you will be running first for any compatibility problems. Since you already purchased some retail products your list does get narrowed a bit.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Mar 2011   #7

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Even antique 1990s versions of Photoshop (version 4 for instance) will install on Win 7 32. They won't install on Win 7 64 bit because of a 16 bit installer program.

Modern versions of Photoshop will install on either 32 bit or 64 bit Win 7.

Photoshop 4 was the only prog I had that would not install on 64 bit--so I used Win 7 32 bit for over a year. I replaced Photoshop 4 with CS 3 a couple of months ago and therefore was able to upgrade from Win 7 32 bit to Win 7 64 bit---if you choose to call it an upgrade. I can't tell the difference in day to day operation.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Mar 2011   #8

Windows 7 Ultimate x64, XP Mode, W8.1 Preview VM - 7 Pro x64 second remote tower
 
 

It depends mainly on whether each program requires a 64bit version or simply supports both 32/64bit Windows. As far as the 32bit 7 that has far more backward compatibility for the old stuff. I even ran old XP drivers for video and sound when a temp install of the 32bit went onto one old case here pointing that out.

As far as pc games those always do seem to fare better for any version or flavor. Some you wouldn't see on the 32bit Vista in any form will go right onto the 32bit 7.

The one other thing I could add here is that 7 will be the last version to see any 32bit editions apparently. So if you feel the 32bit is the way to go now this would be the last to see that.

Getting into the 64bit is involved in other ways not mentioned however as far as how you connect online if your ISP provided hardwares are 32bit only as well as any other addon devices lacking 64bit driver support. I ran into a few of those problems at first when the 64bit beta build was first looked at and finally solved by the time the RCs were out.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Mar 2011   #9

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

It is always worth cleaning the HD before any reinstall.
SSD / HDD : Optimize for Windows Reinstallation
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Mar 2011   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate x64, XP Mode, W8.1 Preview VM - 7 Pro x64 second remote tower
 
 

I couldn't agree more since I simply delete the entire primary off of any drive before performing a clean install of the OS which sees a brand new one. I've had a few occasions when a simple reformat ended up having problems with a fresh install of Windows.

The full system image option does the exact same when going to restore an image backup. That's also a good thing to consider once you have everything up and running well.
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