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Post Info TOPIC: HTG Explains: What’s the Difference Between 32-bit and 64-bit Windows 7?


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HTG Explains: What’s the Difference Between 32-bit and 64-bit Windows 7?
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Whether shopping for a new computer or upgrading an old one, you’ve likely come across the the “64-bit” designation and wondered what it meant. Read on as we explain what Windows 7 64-bit is and why you’d want a piece of that 64-bit pie.

Windows 7 has done an enormous amount to increase the popularity of 64-bit computing among home users but many people are unclear on what exactly it means (and may not even realize they’re already running it). Today we’re taking a look at the history of 32-bit and 64-bit computing, whether or not your computer can handle it, and the benefits and shortcomings of using a 64-bit Windows environment.

 A Very Brief History of 64-bit Computing

Before we start dazzling you with interesting history, let’s get the basics down. What does 64-bit even mean? In the context of discussions about 32-bit and 64-bit personal computers the XX-bit format refers to the width of the CPU’s register.

The register is a small amount of storage used by the CPU where the CPU keeps the data it needs to access the quickest in order for optimum computer performance. The bit designation refers to the width of the register, thus a 64-bit register can hold more data than a 32-bit register which in turn holds more than 16-bit and 8-bit registers. The more ample the space in the CPU’s register system the more it can handle, especially in terms of utilizing system memory. A CPU with a 32-bit register, for example, has a ceiling of 232 addresses within the register and is thus limited to accessing 4GB of RAM. This may have seemed like an enormous volume of RAM when they were hashing out register sizes 40 years ago but it’s a rather inconvenient limit for modern computers.

How-To-Geek has the article HERE!



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