There are several things to keep in mind when purchasing a new computer. We are looking for the size of the RAM, processor, GPU, hard disk size … etc. But when it comes to choosing a processor class, we prefer 64-bit processor. In fact, most people want a computer with a 64-bit processor without knowing what it means to have a 64-bit processor and what is the difference between 32-bit and 64-bit processors?
It is good to have knowledge of various terms that are used daily. In this article, let’s discuss the difference between 32-bit and 64-bit processors and what they mean for your computer.
The difference between 32-bit and 64-bit processors
Whenever you buy an operating system, program, or game, you will likely see 32-bit and 64-bit options available. If you are a Windows user, you must have noticed two folders of Program Files – one simply “Program Files” and the other titled “Program Files (x86).” This “Program Files” folder is used to store DLL files from 64-bit applications only. The x86 folder is used to store DLL files for 32-bit applications.
To install a 64-bit version of Windows, you need a processor capable of running a 64-bit version of Windows. The benefits of using a 64-bit operating system are most beneficial when you have a large amount of random access memory (RAM) installed on your computer, usually 4 GB of RAM or more.
In such cases, because a 64-bit operating system can handle large amounts of memory more efficiently than a 32-bit operating system, a 64-bit system can be more responsive when running multiple programs simultaneously and switching between them frequently.
A computer with a 64-bit processor can have a 64-bit or 32-bit version of the operating system installed. However, with a 32-bit operating system, the 64-bit processor will not run at its full capacity.
How can a 64-bit processor handle more RAM?
The computer system only supports binary counting. There is either 0 or 1. Each one is considered a “bit”. This means for 1 bit computing, you can get 2 possible values; 2 bits means four values; Then at 3 bits, that is doubled to eight (2³).
If you continue like this, you end up getting 32 bits (2 to the 32nd power) of 4,294,967,296 and 64 bits (or 2 to the 64th power) of 18,446,744,073,709,551,616.
That’s a lot of bits, and the numbers just show how powerful the chip supports higher computing. It is more than double. So it is clear that a 64-bit processor is capable of computing over 32-bit.
These days, you’re most likely already running a 64-bit processor with 64-bit operating systems, which in turn run 64-bit apps (for mobile) or programs (for desktop). Windows 7, 8, 8.1, and 10 all came in 32-bit or 64-bit versions, for example.