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Windows 7: x86 vs x64 = which is faster

06 Oct 2009   #11

Windows 7 64bit RTM

64 bit applications require more ram than 32 bit, Including your OS. Windows 7 64 bit uses about 300-400MB more memory BASE just to run over the 32 bit version. So if you don't have a good amount of RAM to compensate, then you could actually see slower results. The fact that you can use more than 3.5GB or ram, or less in some computers, can be the single most important thing to speeding up yor system. Especially if you are doing video Editing, rendering, etc. I can guarantee that a 64bit system with 8 GB or ram is going to do editing a lot better than a 32 bit system with 3GB of ram. And if your editing program is 64 Bit as well, it should go even faster, sometimes as much as double.

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07 Oct 2009   #12

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

64 bit is the future....might as well jump on it now. At least Win 7 has most of it's 64 bit drivers worked out, and it looks like manufacturers will be actively supporting it.

I suppose one could make a case for "waiting" for x128....then again....
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07 Oct 2009   #13


128-bit processors could become prevalent when 16 exbibytes of addressable memory is no longer enough (128-bit processors would allow memory addressing for 340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456 bytes (~340.3 undecillion bytes); about 340,282,366,920,938.5 yottabytes; exactly 281,474,976,710,656 yobibytes; exactly 256 tebi-yobibytes; or exactly 256 exbi-exbibytes of memory). However, physical limits make such large amounts of memory currently impossible, given that amount greatly exceeds the total data stored on Earth.
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07 Oct 2009   #14

Linux CENTOS 7 / various Windows OS'es and servers

Hi there
The only real serious app I use daily where I can actually tell which version works faster is - Photoshop CS4.

This works FAR better / faster on the 64 bit version than the 32 bit version - especially with todays professional DSLR's where you are dealing with really LARGE files - especially if you are preparing very large (A2 size and up) prints for murals etc etc.

I would imagine the average joe watching a DVD, surfing the net / emailing, using social networking sites or doing typically small Office type applications such as Word / EXCEL would not find any difference whatsoever - especially if their machines have 4GB RAM or less.

If you are running a server / website , have loads of users, have more than 4GB RAM, run large data base applications or want to run a lot of Virtual Machines at the same time then 64 bit is the way to go.

I would in any case use the 64 bit version wherever feasably possible as future applications will be genuinely 64 bit enabled and this WILL make a difference (even on a 2GB RAM machine).

Run a 32 bit OS in a VM if you still need 32 bit apps in the future.

In any case I think even a basic laptop (not a netbook) will come equipped with 4GB RAM as a minimum -- its already happening with some makes of laptops.

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07 Oct 2009   #15


I'd tend to expect you have to get to 4GB of RAM and up to start noticing a difference. With less than that I don't know that you'd notice it since the way they buffer for programs should be similar at the lower levels.

With the larger amounts of 4GB and up that only 64-bit can handle, you should be able to run multiple programs and switch between them more effectively. And programs that use a lot of RAM (like photo and video editing) should have significant differences.

I suppose you might notice a difference with some hardware that has good 64-bit drivers, too, like perhaps some scanners.

Anyway, if I myself was on a system with only 3GB RAM and I wasn't planning to upgrade to larger amounts anytime soon, I'd likely stick with 32-bit.
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07 Oct 2009   #16

Windows 7 64bit RTM

yeah, just depends on your preference and need. You you are a gamer, then 32 bit is fine for now. There are only a handful of 64 bit, multi-core games out. I myself do a lot of stuff and I'm actually looking to go to 12GB of memory from my 6GB as I sometimes run close to running out.
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07 Oct 2009   #17

Windows 7 Ultimate 64-Bit / Ubuntu 10.04

Agreed with regards to the Photoshop CS4 comments. The 64-Bit version is significantly faster when dealing with large files. My machine now eats right through my Nikon D3x files, something it struggled with previously.
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08 Oct 2009   #18

Windows 7 Ultimate

I'd just like to shed my exprience of Windows 7, 32 and 64 bit on this post.

The 32 bit software appears fine but early on suffered from some minor security problems that were not present in the 64 bit version. These flaws were subsequently fixed and i'm sure they were present in the 64 bit version too, but they are less likely to be exploited when the code for the exploit is generally coded on a 32 bit level and the 64 bit OS just ignores it.

This is one of the reasons i used 64 bit over 32 bit, although i still run 32 bit on my netbook as it cant take 64 bit.

Next thing was when I initially tried Windows 7, I had only 2Gb RAM. I could literally run Windows, Firefox a music player and occasionally a game i was playing would crash, this is because 2Gb is just not enough for 64 bit. If you have less than 3Gb of RAM i do not recommend you use 64 bit, 4Gb+ is more optimal but 3Gb should be the MINIMUM for 64 bit consideration.

Lastly a lot of video players and editing programs for photo and video support 64 bit processing and its associated memory addressing and these often run like lightning. The same goes for compression (zip/rar files) and audio encoding (converting to mp3 etc).

It is true that you may not see a difference in games and the like.

Drivers for 64 bit can be a problem, especially if you have some devices that are not too prevalent in the market or dont have decent support.
But if your pc is relatively up to date, most if not all your devices should work. Of course, there is always the chance that your 32-bit driver wont work anyway on the 32-bit version of Windows 7. So you might have to update hardware to move to it anyway....even though in my experience Windows 7 driver support is very good out of the box.
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 x86 vs x64 = which is faster

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