Is 32 bit software faster than 64 bit software?

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by mattbiernat, Sep 8, 2012.

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  1. mattbiernat

    mattbiernat Registered Member

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    Well, I'd like to have everyone's input? Is 32 bit security software faster than 64 bit software on a 64 bit computer?

    Here is what one of the members wrote:

    I tested 3 browsers in the past month:
    1) Opera 32 bit vs Opera 64 bit --> Opera 64 bit much faster
    2) Firefox 32 bit vs Waterfox 64 bit vs PaleMoon 64 bit --> PM 64 bit much faster
    3) Internet Explorer 32 bit vs Internet Explorer 64 bit --> IE 64 bit much faster

    So unless Opera 32, Firefox 32 and IE 32 have crappy codes, your theory doesn't hold.


    We don't care if the code is different. We only care whether 32 bit software runs faster on a 64 bit computer than 64 bit software on a 64 bit computer. We only care about practical application of 64 bit software being faster on my computer than 32 bit software.
     
  2. mattbiernat

    mattbiernat Registered Member

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    Okay here is a test result for a simple security application:

    Qucik Scan of my computer:
    1) TrendMicro Hosuecall 32 - 8 min 58 seconds
    2) TrendMicro Housecall 64 - 7 min 18 seconds

    This is a very simple application that mostly operates in the cloud and yet there was still a huge difference in time. The 64 bit version performed 1 minute 40 seconds faster on a quick scan. That's almost 20% faster.

    So it looks like your believe that 32 bit applications run faster than 64 bit applications on a 32 bit system is a bit off. We now have not one but 4 applications that run better in 64 bit mode.
     
  3. fax

    fax Registered Member

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    The point is not running faster. That was just for a specific function in a specific security tool.
    The question should be: Does it really matter if a security tool is developed in 32bit or fully in 64bit. The answer for me is: NO, not relevant for security tools. End of story ;)

    Your question in the subject has nothing to do with security tools.... but of course, its a legitimate questions and for many software will be yes.
     
  4. mattbiernat

    mattbiernat Registered Member

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    No, you did say specifically that 32 bit runs faster than 64 bit. Then you said that it runs equally as fast. As you can see from my browser testing and TrendMicro HouseCall test, 64 bit applications do indeed run faster on a 64 bit system than 32 bit applications.

    While for you, security is most important, for me usability and speed is equally important to security. That's why I only try to install 64 bit software.
     
  5. fax

    fax Registered Member

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    Lets see what others have to say about it, otherwise its a monologue. Btw, just to be precise, you presented 1 case not 4. As 3 out of the four examples are related to browsers and not security tools. Plus the security tool is cloud, so the timing may be influenced by the connection. ;)
     
  6. The Seeker

    The Seeker Registered Member

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    I'm surprised you found 64-bit IE9 to be faster.

    Source.
     
  7. Kees1958

    Kees1958 Registered Member

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    Experts promised a 20% gain moving from 32 bits fo 64 bits, because of the wider bus capacity of the CPU lanes. In practise cheaper CPU's with smaller caches experienced a 5 to 10 percent loss in performance due to the larger bit footprint of the instructions to be processed (CPU cache misses could result in disk access).

    I have a low end dual core (E5200) old desktop with only 2GB Ram, I replaced a windows 7 home premium x64 bit with a windows 7 32 bits ultimate lisence of my dead business laptop for the security benefits of Ultimate. Surprisingly the PC felt a lot snappier with the x32 OS on it. So it also depends on the hardware whether x64 is faster than x32.
     
  8. buckshee

    buckshee Registered Member

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    The way I understand it, is that 64bit software may run faster than its 32bit equivalent on a 64bit OS
    However, 32 bit software will run slower on a 64 bit OS than on a 32 bit OS machine.
     
  9. kjdemuth

    kjdemuth Registered Member

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    Currently I don't see any advantage to run 64 bit. Unless you have a large amount of memory and need to run 64 bit programs, then it's not necessary. Like kees said 32 bit seems to be snappier in its performance. One of the reasons not to run 64 bit is the ability to use some 32 bit programs.
     
  10. mattbiernat

    mattbiernat Registered Member

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    We are comparing running 64bit applications on a 64 bit system vs 32 bit applications on a 64 bit system. NOT 32 bit applications on a 32 bit system.

    I can agree with that.

    Here is my system:
    64bit AMD 1.5 Ghz single core
    64gb SSD
    6GB Ram

    My main adventage of going from 32 bit browser to 64 bit browser is the speed. I suspect that if you got low RAM and 5200 RPM HDD, you will barely see any difference.
     
  11. NGRhodes

    NGRhodes Registered Member

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    The only difference of 32bit vs 64bit on the same architecture is the addressable memory. No performance differences what so ever.

    BUT

    x64 is slightly architecturally different to x86, additional general purpose registers, additional SSE SIMD registers being the main differences off the top of my head.
    Video decoding/encoding is about the best example of where there is a performance difference, I get 20% faster encoding decoding of x264 x64 vs x86, where close attention to optimisation has been made. General day to day usage performance benifits will probably be more like 1 or 2% faster - and considering most machines nowadays are not CPU bound for 99% of their daily useage means it would probably be very difficult to get a statistically measurable difference in performance (when you consider the signifiance of the variance between repeated test runs).

    Any big differences between general applications 64bit vs 32bit will be down to how well the code has been optimised, e.g. additional effort to fine tune the compilation, I/O and memory usage of one over the other.

    There is some processing involving IO that is twice as fast due to another difference I cant remember about, which can make running as a virtualisation host faster.
     
  12. Hungry Man

    Hungry Man Registered Member

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    Except for having access to double the registers... which allows for a stack register among other really large performance improvements. And as you mention, there's the SSE optimizations having a way greater effect for 64bit.

    In terms of IO it only matters for addressable space. For a 32bit program to access 5GB of data it has to use two cycles, for a 64bit program it has to use one cycle.

    A program optimized to make use of the 64bit benefits will be considerably faster (multiple times) - but most programs aren't, so it's marginal. Even without optimizing for it you still benefit because of things like the stack register, which will be used regardless.
     
  13. NGRhodes

    NGRhodes Registered Member

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    Double SOME OF the registers is due to a change in architecture not because of the doubling of the word length.

    Ah cheers for that :)

    Cheers, Nick
     
  14. Hungry Man

    Hungry Man Registered Member

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    Right, true. But I think for the discussion it makes sense to bring up that while x86 and x86_64 might not have those differences when you buy a 64bit computer you do get them.
     
  15. NGRhodes

    NGRhodes Registered Member

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    Yes, a lot of people assume 64bit = x64 and 32bit = x86 :)
     
  16. aladdin

    aladdin Registered Member

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    I am a very, very old man. When I bought my first IBM PC (genuine), I paid an arm and a leg. I had the following two choices at the time.

    1. IBM PC 8086 with 256MB memory, and no hard drive. The memory can be expanded to 512MB. x8bits processor.

    2. Apple with 64MB memory, could be expanded to 256MB in banking mode, with no hard drive.

    I remember, the Apple salesman giving me hardcore lessons, that why would one need more than 64MB memory, and then there is banking.

    Then came out the 80186 processor, 16bits. We moved to 80286 processor, 32bits. And eventually, AMD came out with x64 processors. Both Microsoft and Intel decided to punish AMD. No drivers were available, no programs were available. Even today Microsoft Office 2010 x64 doesn't work properly and there is hardly any support for it.

    Tzuk swore that he will never came out with Sandboxie version for x64 processor, as Microsoft was screwing everyone one with their implementation of Windows x64.

    Time have come for x128 processors and x256 processors. Technology is there, talking about holding it back. And, there is discussion that x32bits programs run faster.

    Best regards,
     
  17. aladdin

    aladdin Registered Member

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    Today AMD is almost dead and Intel is ruling the roost, with the help of Microsoft. Two giants who are holding the technology back so that they can retain their leadership position.

    We should demand better, who know and understand computers. We are not laymen.

    Best regards,
     
  18. mattbiernat

    mattbiernat Registered Member

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    I don't think AMD is dead, I just bought a thinkpad with AMD fussion. It runs quite well too.
     
  19. aladdin

    aladdin Registered Member

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    You are right that AMD is not dead and they own ATI to just survive. They were the pioneers in x64 processors. Microsoft wouldn't support them at all, until Intel was well and ready after two years.

    I have a ACER Ferrari, an old laptop with the first x64 processor introduced by AMD. It has Windows XP and it is still smoking hot. But it was a headache to find proper drivers and so forth. Till today, we don't have Windows XP SP3 for x64.

    For a long time there were two versions of Windows x64, the proper one for AMD and the pseudo one for Intel.

    If Microsoft had properly supported AMD, they will be a bigger company today than Intel, and we would at least have the x128 processor by now.

    Best regards,
     
  20. encus

    encus Registered Member

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    Does AMD release a 32 bit processor?
     
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