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Windows 7: x86/x64 question

21 Aug 2013   #1

Windows 7 Enterprise x64
x86/x64 question

Hey everyone,

I was just curious... what does the "x" stand for when refering to x64 (64-bit) and x86 (32-bit) architecture?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Aug 2013   #2

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

The "x" is just a part of the specification and doesn't really have any meaning in itself. x86 refers to a long series of processors beginning with the Intel 8086 and continuing with the 80286, 80386, and the current 32 bit processors. Most of the older CPUs are no longer compatible with a modern OS. x64 refers to 64 bit CPUs that are able to run Windows.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Aug 2013   #3

Windows 7 32 bit

The 'x' started out as a place holder for third digit in successors of the 8086 chip. 80286, 80386, 80486 etc.. When it got to the Pentium Intel changed up the chip naming to mess with the clone chip makers. Pentium was not 80586 according to them, if I remember how it went. In any case, it became shorthand referring to chips derived from the 8086 chain. This distinguishes it from other processors such as Itamium etc..

Probably easier to get more info on Wikipedia or even Intel. I'm sure there's a short history someplace on the Intel site.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

21 Aug 2013   #4

Windows 7 Enterprise x64

Thanks guys!
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 x86/x64 question

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