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  1. #1
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    Well, it seems that Microsoft has decided that it's time to push the 64bit version - hard. I went to BestBuy with a friend yesterday to get her a new laptop and every one they sell now comes with Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit! No downgrades available. As a techie, this makes about as much sense as putting racing controls on a 4 cylinder 110 HP car. Most of these computers only had 2-3 GB of memory and a Celeron or low AMD processor, which means that the 64bit version gives them nothing extra. At first I thought it must just be BestBuy but after checking other retailers, it was the same thing. And the desktops look to be the same.

    I just don't get the logic. Is MS trying to force the transition so they will only have a single code base? They have little to gain as recent versions of Office will run on either version. Of course a lot of other software won't, but that's never been an issue for MS.
    Graham Smith
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  2. #2
    Super Moderator BATcher's Avatar
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    I think you're right! For laptops, Toshiba seemed to be holding out about 6 months ago with 32-bit Windows 7 Home Premium, unlike Dell who have had 64-bit for well over a year, but a quick skate through the (UK) Toshiba website shows 64-bit everywhere.

    Note, though, that Microsoft have recommended that you don't buy the 64-bit version of Office.

    How long before 128-bit becomes the norm? (Probably sooner than IP v6 is...)
    BATcher

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  3. #3
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Graham C. Smith View Post
    I just don't get the logic.
    Here's a blast from the past which might explain it...

    "640K ought to be enough for anybody."

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  4. #4
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    I guess in one sense, people who write code for software just got their job description difficulty increased somewhat.
    Definitely alot more work to write 64 bit code. We may start seeing software prices go up to compensate.
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  5. #5
    5 Star Lounger petesmst's Avatar
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    @RetiredGeek: Remember the old Commodre 64 "PCs"? Looking back I am amazed at how efficient the software was to be sufficiently compact to allow enough space in memory for reasonable programs to run: I remember, as a kid, using a database "DBase" (I think) with a pretty ggod range of capabilites; a pretty good word processor too. All with 64K memory!
    (My Setup: Custom built: 4.00GHz Intel Core i7-6700K CPU; MSI Z170A Gaming Carbon Motherboard (Military Class III); Win 10 Pro (64 bit)-(UEFI-booted); 16GB RAM; 512GB SAMSUNG SD850 PRO SSD; 120GB SAMSUNG 840 SSD; Seagate 2TB Barracuda SATA6G HDD; 2 X GeForceGTX 1070 8GB Graphics Card (SLI); Office 2013 Prof (32-bit); MS Project 2013 (32-bit); Acronis TI 2017 Premium, Norton Internet Security, VMWare Workstation12 Pro). WD My Book 3 1TB USB External Backup Drive). Samsung 24" Curved HD Monitor.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator Deadeye81's Avatar
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    We have a 64 bit Windows 7 Core i5 laptop and a 32 bit Windows 7 Core i5 laptop in our home. Both machines, while not of the same manufacture, share some of the same hardware components. Both laptops have 4GB ram installed from the manufacturer. As we know, 32 bit Windows will not address more than 3.5 GB at best. Both are equipped with Home Premium. I clean out junk whenever I buy a new machine, and disable everything we will not need to have a lean clean setup, as many member of the Lounge do.

    I have noticed that the 64 bit laptop uses more of the 4GB ram to operate than does the 32 bit laptop. This is while running the same processes and applications. I noted that the percentage of physical ram reported to be used on the 32 bit machine runs from 20 to 26 percent, while the 64 bit machine typically runs anywhere from 19 to to 26 percent. Now the 64 bit machine is able to address the entire 4GB of ram, while the 32 bit machine is addressing at best 512MB less ram. I realize that observing this on just two laptops in not conclusive. I just find it interesting. I can see no real advantage to running the 64 bit Windows 7 editions with only 4GB of ram (though I realize there are other advantages, such as better security), however, most home users will not need more than that for quite some time, which in regards to technology, can be measured in months.

    But then, we will probably see the 32 bit editions of Windows disappear completely before long.
    Deadeye81

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    I have noticed for some time that most laptops came with a 64 bit motherboard. Some had 32 bit OS installed but more had the 64 bit.
    Since Windows 7, I have not seen any 32 BIT laptops, on the shelf.

    I read some where that the OEM's are using the 64 bit motherboards to cut down on the inventory. Why stock 2 when one will work, and the cost difference is NOT that much. Now I said cost not the retail price.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

  8. #8
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter S View Post
    @RetiredGeek: Remember the old Commodre 64 "PCs"?
    Peter,

    I can't believe the things I did with my Radio Shack Model 1! Yeah been there done that. Remember Visi-Calc, MS-Basic, CBasic, Dbase II, Electric Pencil? I could go on and on but who cares.

    Some one made the comment that writing 64bit software was harder. I don't see why, if you have a 64bit compiler for the language you're using it shouldn't make a difference. Now if you're writing assembler that may be a different story but who does that anymore except OS & Compiler writers?

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  9. #9
    5 Star Lounger petesmst's Avatar
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    @RetiredGeek: Yees, I remember all that. And: Agreed, Westward Ho!
    (My Setup: Custom built: 4.00GHz Intel Core i7-6700K CPU; MSI Z170A Gaming Carbon Motherboard (Military Class III); Win 10 Pro (64 bit)-(UEFI-booted); 16GB RAM; 512GB SAMSUNG SD850 PRO SSD; 120GB SAMSUNG 840 SSD; Seagate 2TB Barracuda SATA6G HDD; 2 X GeForceGTX 1070 8GB Graphics Card (SLI); Office 2013 Prof (32-bit); MS Project 2013 (32-bit); Acronis TI 2017 Premium, Norton Internet Security, VMWare Workstation12 Pro). WD My Book 3 1TB USB External Backup Drive). Samsung 24" Curved HD Monitor.

  10. #10
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gerald Shepard View Post
    (though I realize there are other advantages, such as better security),

    Gerald, I think this is the biggest advantage for now. You are right that most home users do not need the power of 64 Bit, but as software evolves, more powerful apps will be brought into the home, and more home users will get comfortable doing things they would have never thought of doing a year or 2 ago. "Westward Ho" indeed!!! It's definitely late enough for one, or 2....3??? Ted
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  11. #11
    Super Moderator Deadeye81's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveA View Post
    Since Windows 7, I have not seen any 32 BIT laptops, on the shelf.
    Dave, I have seen several Win7 32 bit laptops since manufacturers began to make deliveries, but I have only seen one, from MSI in the last two months in our area. They are definitely becoming dinosaurs.

    Ted, like I alluded to earlier, a long time in computer technology is measured in only a few months. After I bought a quad core cpu to upgrade my desktop a few months ago, and upgraded to Win7 64, I boosted the ram from 3 to 6 GB just for the heck of it. Makes me feel like I'm loaded for bear now (maybe a small bear).
    Deadeye81

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  12. #12
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    Do we need 64 bit? No of course not. But we don't need a microwave, or an electric watch, or any number of things that a good old fashion house and buggy can't provide. But hey it's new and different.

    The biggest farce I've seen is MS's use of the ribbon in Office. If the ribbon was used on the first version of Office, then the "old" menu would be new and pushed on us as progress. Go figure.

  13. #13
    5 Star Lounger RussB's Avatar
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    I agree, Westward HO!
    Just hoping that West = "Right" and not "Left" this time!
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  14. #14
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    I suspect that most business users will have fewer problems than home users. The software found in most offices is new enough to run without problems and most businesses will be installing the Pro version and have access to "XP mode" anyway.

    It's the home users that may face the most problems. They are more likely to have older software (such as games) that won't run and the home version doesn't have XP mode. This is why I'm so surprised by this move, why put the 64 bit version on a low end home computer?
    Graham Smith
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Graham C. Smith View Post
    I suspect that most business users will have fewer problems than home users. The software found in most offices is new enough to run without problems and most businesses will be installing the Pro version and have access to "XP mode" anyway.

    It's the home users that may face the most problems. They are more likely to have older software (such as games) that won't run and the home version doesn't have XP mode. This is why I'm so surprised by this move, why put the 64 bit version on a low end home computer?
    I feel it is more likely that businesses will take longer to adopt 64-bit than consumers. One, consumers buying a new PC don't have much choice. Two, businesses just take longer because of testing and compatability requirements. Granted most 32-bit software will run without change on a 64-bit system but that is by no means guaranteed. Most likely businesses will test and roll out a 64-bit OS gradually.

    As to why 64-bit on a low end consumer PC. Most consumers don't care. Most software developers only want to support one set of code. This included Microsoft, application developers, big OEM hardware verndors (i.e. Dell, HP, etc.), periperahl OEMs that produce drivers. That is a huge ecosystem that has many millions of lines of code to support. One code base is much cheaper and more effective to support.

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