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My laptop has 4 gigs of DDR2 RAM and I am currently using a 32bit windows 7 OS. Will I notice any performance difference if I upgrade to 64bit or does all the benefits of X64 start at 5GB of RAM?

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Anyone any comment on 64 bit possibly using more memory? According to Wikipedia: The main disadvantage of 64-bit architectures is that relative to 32-bit architectures, the same data occupies more space in memory (due to swollen pointers and possibly other types and alignment padding). This increases the memory requirements of a given process and can have implications for efficient processor cache utilization. –  Arjan Jun 5 '10 at 20:24
    
@Arjan I can say this is true, but only talking marginal amounts and not really worth mentioning. –  William Hilsum Jun 5 '10 at 20:51
    
    
@Hello, I feel this very question is a bit more specific. –  Arjan Jun 6 '10 at 9:45
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3 Answers

You will get an extra .3-.7 ish GB of memory depending on other hardware such as graphics.

However, in all honesty, there are not many improvements in x64 windows over x86 unless you actually make use of applications that are only available in 64-bit editions or are always at around 90% memory utilisation.

There is a lot of talk about 64 bit being more stable, however, I have never really had a problem on any 32-bit system that I would say were because it was 32-bit.

I was shocked to find that 32-bit Windows on my T9300 CPU loads 4 seconds quicker than 64-bit Windows and I noticed other small slow downs in areas... Actually using Windows, I found very little difference.

At the end of the day, I honestly do not think x64 is bad, 32-bit software runs pretty much the same speed on both and 64-bit compiled software is generally faster.

I personally use x64 Windows, I would say if you have 4GB, it is a hard choice (I personally would go for it), If you have over 4GBs, it is a no-brainer to use x64 Windows.

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A 32-bit OS can actually only use about 3.5GB of RAM, so by installing a 64-bit OS you will gain an extra half-gigabyte or so. On top of that, any applications that are specifically written for 64-bit will be faster on a 64-bit system. (This includes things like WinRAR, Office 2010, Photoshop, etc.) The disadvantages are virtually non-existent, so it's definitely worth it.

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First of all, there are more benefits to a 64bit OS than just RAM. 64bit systems also have more cpu registers that a 64bit OS will know how to take advantage of. There are other optimizations as well.

As for RAM, if you check your system I think you'll find you're not using all of your RAM right now. Other devices in your system share the 4GB of address space with your RAM.

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