Windows 7: 32 bit or 64 bit

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by TheKid7, Mar 5, 2010.

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  1. TheKid7

    TheKid7 Registered Member

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    I am considering purchasing Windows 7 Home Premium or Professional for one of my home PC's, but I am having trouble deciding between 32 bit and 64 bit. One of my favorite security softwares is Sandboxie.

    Would you select 32 bit or 64 bit and what are the reason(s) for your selection?

    Also, is the Professional version worth the extra money?

    Thanks in Advance.
     
  2. whitedragon551

    whitedragon551 Registered Member

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    Sandboxie has a x64 version although its not as secure as the x86 version.

    Heres some reading material on why:

    http://www.sandboxie.com/index.php?WindowsVista64

    http://www.sandboxie.com/index.php?NotesAbout64BitEdition

    I have the x64 Pro and love it. I would go x64 especially if your computer has more than 4Gbs of RAM or 3Gbs of RAM and a dedicated GPU with atleast 512Mb GDDR2. A x86 OS wont utilize all of the hardware properly. x64 is the future, you might as well get it now and get used to it.
     
  3. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    Win 7 64 here also. Sandboxie or not (and no, it isn't as tight as the 32bit version), 64bit is all but the norm as far as operating systems go these days.
     
  4. linuxforall

    linuxforall Registered Member

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    64 bit is also far securer and quite resilient to rootkits etc. Also overall performance of x64 is better, even MS is now releasing a x64 Office. Most systems today including laptops come with 4GB RAM default, you need x64 to run that.
     
  5. wat0114

    wat0114 Guest

    x64 also and yes Pro is worth it, or Ultimate (you could use AppLocker :thumb: ) if you can afford it. Less than 4 GB RAM may not be such a big deal for you either. I went from 2 to 4 and notice zero difference. I'm actually disappointed I forked out $80 and perceive no difference :( Talk about less bang for the buck - LOL! It comes down to your needs, although x64 efficient memory management really only kicks in at 4GB and up.
     
  6. Greg S

    Greg S Registered Member

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    Just bought a new laptop for the wife. Didn't really have much choice but to go with x64. Of the twenty five plus lappys available, one was a 32bit display model of Vista.
     
  7. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

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    I shall be the rogue here then ;)

    I will not use 64bit. I have a copy of Vista Ultimate and 7 Ultimate, in both 32 and 64bit flavors. I have tried them. I can see no noticable performance benefit of using 64bit over 32bit.

    I have 4gb of RAM, and I don't plan on upgrading this machine. I do not use more than 2.4 gb of RAM ever, for anything. I have watched my stats, and nothing I do approaches using my full memory.

    If you are going to run some monster programs that can utilize 64bit and the extended RAM it can allocate, then perhaps 64bit is for you.

    If you just want to future-proof yourself now, then perhaps 64bit is for you.

    If you like to have the 'most secure' of the secure, then perhaps 64bit is for you.

    However, if you want nearly every program you have ever used (within reason) to work, and still be able to use it, then 32bit might be for you.

    If you have the kind of eye than can perceive 2 seconds difference in something loading/starting/stopping/etc, then you might like 64bit, as they say it is faster than 32bit, but I sure can't tell it.

    In short, IMHO 64bit is over-hyped today. Yes, the future will certainly hold promise for a wider bit-path. But today, for most common software, I don't see the difference. The software that I have used when I have played with 64bit OS does not seem to be optimized at all. If it is, then the optimization must be miniscule or it is transparent to normal operations.

    You know, you have to run with what makes you feel good. I personally don't think running a 32bit or 64bit version of anything is really going to make things more or less secure. I believe that it is not the flaws/strengths inherent to the code that makes or breaks security any more than what 3rd party tool you run will make or break your security. It lies in the practices and knowledge of the User.

    Many people like 64bit. If things evolve the way they are expected, then one day 64bit will replace 32bit, and hopefully the performance benefits will be realized. But today, I think you could go with either and not really notice. I wonder how many would truly be able to tell the difference if they did not see the marker x86 or x64 somewhere on thier machine.

    Rogue out :D

    Sul.
     
  8. dcrowe0050

    dcrowe0050 Registered Member

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    I agree with Sully. I use 32 bit and do not plan on changing anytime soon. I used a copy of Windows Vista x64 for about 3 or 4 months before my brother bought the 32 bit version and I talked him into trading. I have like 130 programs on my 32 bit Win 7 and believe me or not but I use 120 of them and I know for a fact that all of them will not work on 64 bit. Plus I can think of absolutely no scenario where I would use anymore than 3 GB of RAM.
     
  9. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

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    When I bought a boxed Vista Ultimate, it came with both versions. I'll have to agree with Sully, after using both versions for months alternatively, all I could perceive was a slight increase in speed using the 64 version.

    That would probably be enough to stay with 64; what made me decide in the end to choose the 32 bit, was the availability of drivers on my laptop: even though it is powerful enough to run 64, some of the special keys on my computer wouldn't work, and to find the new drivers was difficult and time consuming (if not available at all for my model).

    The bottom line, IMO, if a machine was first conceived on 32 bit, it is better to stay with it. Buying a new machine, it goes without saying that I would choose a 64 bit system.
     
  10. wat0114

    wat0114 Guest

    My machine is 4 yrs old but still 64 bit capable (amd x2 64), so why on earth would I want to run 32 bit on it? Why dummy down the hardware's capabilities when you can fully harness it with x64? I'll admit the speed difference is minimal but it is also more secure, whether people want to admit it or not.
     
  11. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

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    I won't argue the technical points about 64bit being more secure, in theory.

    However, do you think in the hands of the ordinary "button clicker" type user that 64 bit is any more secure than 32 bit? I certainly don't have any delusions that 32 vs 64 bit makes a lick of difference when an uninformed user literally invites problems by clicking at will.

    Now, place 64bit in the hands of someone who is interested in security, and there could be a difference. But I also don't believe that 64bit brings with it any 'more' security than 32bit in the hands of such a person. Mainly because I don't believe security exists from software. It helps to have 64bit for many reasons, but I'll warrant many people here can use win95 and stay clean longer than some who use the latest greatest everything.

    Are you dummying down the hardware because you are utilizing the hardware to its fullest? If you don't utilize it, is it still dummying it down? Is photoshop or folding at home using it to the fullest? Is gaming with the latest games using it to the fullest? Is playing emulated n64 games on your brand new win7 machine dummying it down?

    lol, I get what you mean, but that assumes you actually use all of your hardware and will gain from 64bit. Most common users I know don't come close to using all of thier hardware on new computers. The only thing I see that taxes these types of users is games. Some of them get into encoding or copying/making movies. I don't know how much 64bit really helps in those situations, but that is the reasoning behind the push to 64bit in the retail market I think.

    I will be happy to use 64bit when the prospective benefits are more compelling than losing the software that runs on it that I love to use. As a matter of fact, the same goes for being User vs. Admin. If all of my software was easy to use in Userland, maybe one day I would switch.

    Don't get me wrong here, I am not saying you should not use 64bit, nor that you should steer away from a new purchase that uses/has 64bit OS with it. I am just saying that I don't PERSONALLY see how it makes it 'faster' in most cases, and in the hands of a competent geek, not any more secure.

    Sul.
     
  12. wat0114

    wat0114 Guest

    It's just that the x64 measure of additional security is already built-in and it's free, so why not utilize it. Of course a willy nilly button clicker no matter what they use is not going to benefit from it, but that's a different story. No amount of hand holding security measures will help anyway. BTW, so many 32 bit programs do run quite nicely under x64 Win 7, so it's (x640)is really not hampering this ability as much as some people think. For my purposes, sure, x64 is not utilizing full capabilities of my hardware because I don't game or use system-intensive apps like Adobe Photoshop, manipulating videos and raw images and such, but I run x64 because I can, so it's there if I need to utilize 4GB RAM. I'm not missing out on anything and I'd say that would be the case with the majority of people going with x64 over 32. Just my thoughts :)
     
  13. Huupi

    Huupi Registered Member

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    It depend if using memory intensive app. like Cad,3D,video editing or Photoshop on big files then more memory addressspace comes as a godsend.
    For office,web and stuff 32bit is more then enough.
     
  14. PC__Gamer

    PC__Gamer Registered Member

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    people are concentrating too much on the 'do i need to use more than 4gb memory?'

    x64 is infact a safer OS, and for more powerfull machines, its also faster, so x64 wins all the way.

    isnt security and speed the biggest issues tackled?

    as for 'my program wont work on x64!' type of comments, this is no longer justified, as most programs now support this platform.
     
  15. twl845

    twl845 Registered Member

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    I hear what you're saying, but someone told me when I was buying my second computer to always buy more than you think you will ever need within your budget. That way you will be current for at least 4 years.
     
  16. wat0114

    wat0114 Guest

    Very sound advice. That sort of approach is recommended in so many situations. Installation of structured cabling is, for example, one where too often only the presently required is installed, so in the future when more is needed, it's very difficult to add.
     
  17. Victek

    Victek Registered Member

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    It's worth considering the hardware issues too. If a new system has four gigs of ram and you install a 32 bit OS you will probably have 3.25 gigs usable with a 512 meg display adapter. If you have a display adapter with 1 gig that would drop the usable ram down to 2.75 gigs. On the other hand with the 64 bit OS the video ram can be mapped to higher addresses and the 4 gigs of ram is fully available to the OS.

    I feel Sandboxie for x64 adds a lot of security. You would still want a layered defense just as you do with a 32 bit OS.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2010
  18. Kerodo

    Kerodo Registered Member

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    I have been using x64 since I bought my new machine over a year and a half ago, and I see no reason not to use it. I don't see anyone offering good reasons to revert to x32. I don't think there are any.
     
  19. Bob D

    Bob D Registered Member

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    Interesting blog from Bill Pytlovany (WinPatrol developer, Microsoft MVP)
     
  20. linuxforall

    linuxforall Registered Member

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    This is exactly my thought. From the day I bought a x64 AMD dual core, its been x64, be it Linux or the excellent XPx64, I haven't looked back. Every program ran on XPx64, with linux, all programs were truly x64 compiled, those that didn't work used the ia32 libs and worked fine, the biggest issue remaining in x64 Linux was flash and that thankfully has been solved x64 flash which works out quite well till HTML5 comes to the rescue.
     
  21. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

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    Respect to all. I don't doubt anyones personal knowledge/experience in this arena. But, I also don't think the story is finished either, but still being written...

    Again, the term 'faster' is used like it is just a fact. Reality, shown by any objective test, is that on the same hardware, in most normal circumstances, you will be hard pressed to actually 'see and feel' the difference x64 gives you. Like I said, I won't argue it is technically faster and more secure. But, I don't believe you could tell the difference in speed (to the naked eye) unless you are using applications that need x64 to really shine.

    Why? There are plenty of programs that won't work on x64. I fail to see all 6 million software titles produced in the last 15 years of windows OS all being compliant with x64. I can fully appreciate those who enjoy certain software and would rather run x32 than x64 to keep them.

    Yes, completely agree. Like I stated, some may want x64 to future proof their machines. That is why I have Ultimate x32 and x64. I know it is coming some day, just not today for me :)

    Actually I have 4 gigs of ram with a 756 video card and I have 3.3 roughly usable. Since I dont' approach even 3gb ram usage ever, x64 might address that space, but would not use it. There are methods you can try to employ that load more data into RAM instead of pagefile, but I don't know it is worth it.

    Totally. For most people there probably isn't a good reason to go with x32, other than operability of older softwares you really like. But, it is not like you will experience anything negative by using x32. It will seem as fast as x64, and if you are smart will be as secure as x64.

    I truly do find a lot of humor in the push for x64. Not that I snicker at you guys, because you are probably informed enough to understand why you use x64. But I laugh at the average consumer who buys x64 on nearly every new machine out there today. They buy into the argument that x64 is somehow the "best thing since sliced bread", the same as they buy into Windows is better than *nix, the same as Apple users buy into the Mac is better than Windows, the same as Vista is better than XP, the same as 7 is better than Vista. All of those arguments are only half-truths. The truth is, on most new hardware, with a dose of common sense and some time invested in learning some basics, none of the above are true.

    x64 is designed to use double the bit-path of x32, therefore it transfers twice the data as x32. Technically it should be faster. A program compiled/designed for x32 does not really perform better in x64, it just runs on it. A program compiled/designed for x64 should perform better. Of course, coding a notepad application for x64 gains you nothing, as a powerful computer is easily capable of running it in x32 or x64.

    The OP asked a simple question, which should he/she purchase. If we consider that the OP is a neophyte in computers, especially security, it is plausible that x64 would be the wise choise. If we consider that the OP is an advanced user, x64 could be used, but so could x32. If the OP has many older programs, perhaps he/she should consider which ones cannot be discarded (for whatever reason he/she chooses), and research to see if they are supported on x64.

    There is certainly no shame in using x32 for any reason. How many here have been on x32 for years now, and of those years, how many were able to remain problem free? How did switching to x64 change this? You are now suddenly "less infected"? I will wager that everyone who has been into security for some time can honestly say they like the 'better' security x64 brings them, but that because of thier knowledge x32 was not "constantly infested" as the x64 debate seems to elude to.

    All that being said, there is not a way to persuade someone, anyone, that things they cannot see are better or worse than other things they cannot see. The old saying "seeing is believing" is quite true. Stand two identical machines side by side, one with x32 and one with x64. Run your day to day items, have a stopwatch to compare the differences. What will it be? Seconds. Run some malware, then you will see some difference. Oh wait, you can't do that, because you now know too much to actually (hopefully) be "caught with your pants down" regarding malware etc, for if you know enough to test and what to watch for, then surely you must know enough to mitigate the threats you are testing for, or will shortly ;)

    I heartily agree that x64 has features that should make the hardware perform faster. And I also agree that the way they are coding things for x64 should make it more secure than x32. But you can use x32 without "selling your soul" too.

    Take it all with a grain of salt, as opinions are like arsewholes, everybody has one ;)

    Sul.
     
  22. dcrowe0050

    dcrowe0050 Registered Member

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    It is very much the only reason that I do not use X64 right now. I can make you a pretty big list if you want me too. Unless something very drastic has changed since December when I got my X64 Win 7 copy, which I doubt it has. I have a huge list of software that I normally use and like to keep around and when I could not get it to run on X64 I got rid of it.

    Sure there are benefits and it is "more secure", but security is relative anyway.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2010
  23. Huupi

    Huupi Registered Member

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    To get all my softwares in 64 bit breaks my bank. :D

    Its a huge investment only for what i already use in Photoshop !
     
  24. Boost

    Boost Registered Member

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    IF I was buying a new computer today,it would be the Windows 7 32 bit version.
     
  25. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

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    I'd go out and buy a 32bit version if I could (I have 6Gb of RAM and I also can't spare the cash for another copy of 7). I'm finding quite a few programs that either aren't supported in 64bit (Zemana Anti-keylogger being a heartbreaking example) or isn't as secure either by proof or suspicion (Sandboxie being a prime example).
     
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