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Windows 7: Will installing a 64-bit program in Program Files (x86) cripple it?

06 Aug 2013   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
Will installing a 64-bit program in Program Files (x86) cripple it?


I have a question about Windows 7 Program Files folders. There is a lot of discussion on why the distinct folders are necessary, but I remain unclear about this problem.

Let's say I have a portable 64-bit program whose binaries and dll's arrive in an archive like a .zip package. Will plopping those in the Program Files (x86) folder potentially cause problems for that program?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Aug 2013   #2

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1

Why take a chance? Put them where they belong.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Aug 2013   #3

W7 Ultimate SP1, LM18.3 MATE, W10 Home, #All 64 bit

I didn't have any problems when I used a separate partition for my programs.

I had a folder for XP programs and another folder for W7 programs.
I didn't have 32 bit and 64 bit sub-folders inside the W7 programs folder.

However, it may confuse the "Compatibility" feature, if the programs aren't separated.
I don't use that feature and the times I've tried it, it hasn't made any difference.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

08 Aug 2013   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

I don't think there should be any problem. That separation is more a matter of convention, and after that, having 2 separate paths lets 32 bits program load 32 bits libraries, and 64 bits program load 64 bits libraries (which by design cannot be exchanged). Problems may arise if you ever install BOTH a x86 and a x64 version of the same program at the same time, as they might look in each other folder and mix their files.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by farawayse View Post
Let's say I have a portable 64-bit program whose binaries and dll's arrive in an archive like a .zip package.
Most likely, yes, but for a permissions reason. Portables aren't meant to be run on program files folder, but on other places where the user has read/write permission, as they write their settings and data directly to it's folder, which in program files is restricted (x86 or not). Moreover, since we're talking about a x64 program, UAC virtualization has no chance of working.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Aug 2013   #5

Windows 7 32 bit

I agree with Alejandro. I put portable apps that just use an .ini file for settings in a folder called Utils directly under C: on my machines. I have seen some 64 bit programs with installers that put the files in x86. I didn't notice any issues. As long as the program uses the path of the program to "find itself" in its home folder, insteae of making assumptions, it shouldn't cause a problem.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Aug 2013   #6

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Thank you for your answers gentlemen!
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Will installing a 64-bit program in Program Files (x86) cripple it?

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