Windows | What is the difference between 32 and 64 bit?

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You’ve probably wondered what the difference is between 32-bit and 64-bit, especially when it comes to a Windows PC. The subject is more in evidence when you are considering buying a used computer, or even when you are going to download software and see that there is this distinction between their versions.

With that in mind, the Kenyannews gathered below the main differences between the two types of processors, and how you can find out if your PC is 32-bit or 64-bit; check below for more details!

What is the difference between 32 and 64 bit

In practical terms, the main difference between 32-bit and 64-bit is in the power to process a larger amount of data. Usually, 32-bit processors tend to be older and slower — and, as a consequence, less secure. 64-bit processors are newer, faster and safer.

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The main point here is the number of calculations per second that each one can perform, which in turn increases the speed of completing tasks. In addition, processors can come with multiple cores (multicore) — in which case, the more the better.

Technically, 32-bit processors can access 2³² different memory addresses, which gives approximately 4GB of RAM (or 3.5GB in practice, as part of the registry is used to store temporary values).

64-bit models can access 2⁶⁴ addresses, which gives approximately 18 EB (Exabytes). Although this is a very large value, it is only theoretical. Looking at it from this angle, if a PC has 8GB or 16GB of RAM, it’s better to have a 64-bit processor.

The amount of bits directly impacts other computer components, such as motherboards, for example. If before they made a 32-track connection between the processor and RAM, now they are able to connect 64.

Which PC should I buy: 32-bit or 64-bit?

When it comes to buying a used PC, there may be the question of whether it is still worth getting a 32-bit one. It is a fact that, in addition to the speed of processing, the 64 is safer than the 32.

But if you don’t need a 100% up-to-date operating system or if you’re going to perform operations that require a higher level of processing and security, this may be the only case where it’s worth investing in a 32-bit computer. However, keep in mind that this model can be quite old and not take long to fail.

64-bit models also offer better graphics performance, which means it will be faster to launch programs and apps, edit photos, play games, or perform other routine tasks.

Make no mistake, a 64-bit computer can still be infected with malware. However, the key point is that it offers many more security features to deal with threats when compared to a 32-bit system.

So, whenever possible, opt for devices that are 64-bit, not only for the processing power itself, but for the security they offer.

How to know if my PC is 32-bit or 64-bit: Windows 7

  1. Access the “Start” menu;
  2. Right click on “Computer” and select “Properties”. If you don’t see the option, do a search;
  3. In the “System type” section, check the system type.

How to know if my PC is 32-bit or 64-bit: Windows 10

  1. Go to the “Settings” tab of Windows 10 and click on “System”;
  2. In the left menu, go to “About” and under the “System type” item you will be able to see if the PC is 32-bit or 64-bit.

Does Windows 11 support 32-bit processors?

There’s not much to run away from, Windows 11 is only compatible with 64-bit processors; Microsoft has abandoned 32-bit versions. This was to be expected, as one of the main operating system requirements is TPM 2.0 (Trusted Platform Module), which is not 32-bit compatible.

Although the system is only available in 64-bit version, it still supports 32-bit applications. In this case, choose to use the 64-bit ones, to avoid a possible malfunction.

From now on you know exactly what the difference between 32 and 64 bits is, and what your PC (Windows 7, 10 and 11) runs on.

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