Friday, July 1, 2011

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Advantages And Dis Advantages Of 64 Bit Windows

Windows Operating System makes everyday tasks faster and easier, to make our PC work the way we want it to, and to make it possible to do new things. And that's exactly what its doing. And now, we have the old 32 bit architecture as well as the new 64 bit architecture. As we have plenty of knowledge working with so far 32 bit architecture, now its time to learn the advantages and the dis advantages of 64 bit architecture.

When deciding to move up to a 64-bit operating system, you should first consider what 64-bit gets you. Knowing what software runs on 64-bit should influence your decision; you will see no advantage if you are running 32-bit software on a 64-bit OS. You also lose the ability to run 16-bit software, which shouldn’t be a problem unless you rely on older software, such as old work software or home-made packages you haven’t yet updated. Read more about the Benefits Of Windows 7 64-bit Operating System

Advantages Of 64 Bit Windows Architecture: 

  • More processing power: In very basic terms, 64-bit means that it can handle twice as many bits per clock cycle. For more on the technicalities of the architecture, we recommend reading this Wikipedia entry.
  • More memory: The 32-bit consumer version of Windows is only capable of addressing 3 to 3.5 Giga Byte of RAM; therefore, when you use more than 4 Giga Byte, the additional RAM goes to waste. Hitting the 3 to 3.5 Giga Byte limit only occurs if you work with several memory-hungry programs at the same time.
  • Performance advantage: Practically speaking, applications can make use of the 64-bit architecture to process huge data operations more quickly. This is especially important with advanced programs, such as video editing suites, games, or encryption software.

  • More security: The 64-bit versions of Windows Vista and 7 contain Kernel Patch Protection which prevents malicious programs from changing the Windows kernel. The operating systems also boast a Data Execution Prevention which uses a special processor feature to prevent an application from running code from a memory region where it’s not supposed to run. Overall, the 64-bit edition is more secure than its 32-bit counterpart.

Dis Advantages Of 64 Bit Windows Architecture: 

  • Possible driver issues: 32-bit drivers are not supported; hardware manufacturers have to provide special 64-bit versions. However, this is not as much of an issue anymore, as nearly all of the hardware that has been released over the past three years has shipped with drivers right out of the box. If not, these drivers will come via Windows Updates or download from the manufacturers support Web sites.  
  • Higher memory consumption: All memory addresses are now 64 bits long instead of 32 bits. This results in a larger memory footprint for Windows and applications. We’ve seen 64-bit versions of Windows Vista and 7 taking up 200-350 Mega byte more RAM than 32-bit versions. If you have at least 3 Giga byte of main memory, this is not an issue, but on a low-end machine (1-2 GB), this causes more access to the hard disk and potentially slows down the machine.
  • No compatibility with 16-bit software: Support for old 16-bit applications has been disabled. In most cases, this is not an issue, except when you or your company uses legacy software that has some 16-bit parts still built into it.
  • Additional Windows layer: 32-bit applications run under the Windows on Windows 64 (WoW64) environment, which emulates the old 32-bit Windows systems. This means that all 32-bit programs need to go through an additional layer in Windows before they can be processed. Although this layer is very thin, it usually results in a 2% performance loss.

These are the top four advantages and dis advantages of going for a 64 Bit Windows Architecture. You can also read my other post where I speak about the Benefits Of Windows 7 64-bit Operating System.

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About bench3 -

Haja Peer Mohamed H, Software Engineer by profession, Author, Founder and CEO of "bench3" you can connect with me on Twitter , Facebook and also onGoogle+

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