Windows 7 Forums
Welcome to Windows 7 Forums. Our forum is dedicated to helping you find support and solutions for any problems regarding your Windows 7 PC be it Dell, HP, Acer, Asus or a custom build. We also provide an extensive Windows 7 tutorial section that covers a wide range of tips and tricks.


Windows 7: Program Files (x86)

25 Nov 2018   #1
Hikermann

Windows 7 Home Premium (x64) Service Pack 1
 
 
Program Files (x86)

PC / Windows 7: in C:\ there is 1) Program Files and 2) Program Files (x86); why the two and what is the difference; should/could one or the other be deleted? Thank you.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
25 Nov 2018   #2
Alejandro85

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

64 bits versions of Windows have many folders and data structures separated for running 32 and 64 bits programs together, side-by-side. In particular, "Program files" and "Program Files (x86)" is one of those.

The purpose is the same as it always was, to serve as the standard place to install system-wide software. As x64 Windows is fully capable of running both x64 and x86 programs, it must be also possible to install them at the same time. So it was created the notion of having two program files folders for each one, to serve each as the standard based on the bitness.

But its whole existence is merely to serve as a convention, as everything it does can be solved by other means. There is no limitation that programs must be installed to the "proper" folder according to its 32/64 bits status, Windows simply doesn't cares at all about the location. The main advantage is to make it possible to have both versions of a program installed simulaneously, something that most default configurations of Windows do, and most software out there respect that convention. But in the end, it's just that, a convention.

Could one of them be deleted?
Yes, absolutely. The location of each is fully configurable and can even be changed to the same location. As long as you consolidate them in one place, you can get rid of the other.

Shoud one of them be deleted?
I can't think a good reason for even attempting doing so. All I said in the previous paragraph is possible, but terribly difficult to do in practice, and there isn't even any benefit in doing so, so why bother? This convention is one of the rare cases where the defaults in Windows not only works well, but also makes sense and are a good idea.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2018   #3
Hikermann

Windows 7 Home Premium (x64) Service Pack 1
 
 

Thank you / appreciated.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

27 Nov 2018   #4
lolnothankyou

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
 
 

If you would like to reduce the size of the operating system you should try NTLite.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Nov 2018   #5
mrjimphelps

Linux Mint 18.2 xfce 64-bit (VMWare host) / Windows 8.1 Pro 32-bit (VMWare guest)
 
 

I would not advise deleting either of your Program Files folders. It's not hurting anything to keep both of them; and you might mess something up that is looking for something in one of those folders.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
Reply

 Program Files (x86)




Thread Tools




Similar help and support threads
Thread Forum
Program installed in Program Files requires elevation?
I have a program that wanted to install in a document folder :mad: I have installed it in Program Files, but it requires elevation or it produces errors when running. I know I can tick the Run As ... box in the shortcut, but is there a better way, such as taking ownership of the install folder?
System Security
Program refusing to install in standard program files folder
I have an Advent (PC World brand) Laptop that comes with its own custom On-Screen Display software. The software is made for 32 bit Windows with no 64 bit version available as far as I'm aware. I have upgraded to 64 bit Windows recently and everything seems to work great except the OSD. ...
Software
Program Files (x86) & Program Files Installed On Another Drive
Hi have have a new PC running Win7 Home Premium 64bit. I have 2 drives: 1 x 120GB SSD (running the OS) (C Drive) 1 x 1TB HDD (D Drive) The SSD is running the OS and a couple of main programs which i use quite often (ie. Office 2010, Antivirus, etc). The HDD i want to use to install and...
General Discussion
Allow installed program to rename files under Program Files (x86)
Hi, I have a program installed under "C:\Program Files (x86)\CompanyName\SWName". When the program runs it's supposed to copy some files, say FROM "C:\Program Files (x86)\CompanyName\SWName\Drivers\*.abc TO "C:\Program Files (x86)\CompanyName\SWName\Drivers\*.xyz The program works on...
General Discussion
Program Files or Program Files (x86)-Where to place downloaded program
My computers are both running Win 7 64-bit. I am thoroughly confused when it comes to placing programs that I download into their proper folders: That is, program files (x86) vs program files. I have read stuff on this, but still confused. for the most part, even when a dl'd program suggests...
Software


Our Sites

Site Links

About Us

Find Us

Windows 7 Forums is an independent web site and has not been authorized, sponsored, or otherwise approved by Microsoft Corporation. "Windows 7" and related materials are trademarks of Microsoft Corp.

Designer Media Ltd

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 19:00.
Twitter Facebook