In some cases after we install certain applications the system will hang either after installation or during reboot process. When...
There are many Companies that are migrating from Windows XP to Windows 7. The most critical point that desktop engineers has to consider is which Windows 7 platform to migrate to? Windows 7 32 bit or Windows 7 64 bit.
Before making a decision on which platform one has to answer many questions. Will this 32-bit software run on 64-bit operating system? Will this 64-bit software run on 32-bit operating system? Below i have illustrated most frequently asked questions about installing 32-bit and 64-bit applicaitons on Windows 32/64 bit OS.
Advantages for 64- Bit:
As the number of bits increases there are two important benefits.
32-bit systems were once desired because they could address (point to) 4 Gigabytes (GB) of memory in one go. Some modern applications require more than 4 GB of memory to complete their tasks so 64-bit systems are now becoming more attractive because they can potentially address up to 4 billion times that many locations.Since 1995, when Windows 95 was introduced with support for 32-bit applications, most of the software and operating system code has been 32-bit compatible.Here is the problem, while most of the software available today is 32-bit, the processors we buy are almost all 64-bit.
The architecture contains three components.
To run a 64-bit operating system you need support from the lower level: the 64-bit CPU.
To run a 64-bit application you need support from all lower levels: the 64-bit OS and the 64-bit CPU.
This simplification will be enough for us to look what happens when we mix the 32-bit and 64-bit parts. But if you want to understand the issue more deeply then you will also need to consider the hardware that supports the CPU and the device drivers that allow the OS and the applications to interface with the system hardware.
What 32-bit and 64-bit combinations are compatible and will work together?This is where we get to the practicalities and can start answering common questions.
The general rule is that 32-bit will run on a lower level 64-bit component but 64-bit does not run on a lower level 32-bit component:
A 32-bit OS will run on a 32-bit or 64-bit processor without any problem.
A 32-bit application will run on a 32-bit or 64-bit OS without any problem.
But a 64-bit application will only run on a 64-bit OS and a 64-bit OS will only run on a 64-bit processor.
These two tables illustrate the same rule:
The main reason that 32-bit will always run on 64-bit is that the 64-bit components have been designed to work that way. So the newer 64-bit systems are backward-compatible with the 32-bit systems (which is the main reason most of us haven’t moved to 64-bit software).
An example of backward compatibility is Windows 64-bit. It has software called WOW64 that provides compatibility by emulating a 32-bit system. See the article How Windows 7 / Vista 64 Support 32-bit Applications if you want to know more. One important point that is made in that article is that it is not possible to install a 32-bit device driver on a 64-bit operating system. This is because device drivers run in parallel to the operating system. The emulation is done at the operating system level so it is available to the higher layer, the application, but it is not available to the device driver which runs on the same level.