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I wanted to know architecture of my processor.

firsthing I did is to type env in cmd and I found these.

PROCESSOR_ARCHITECTURE=x86
PROCESSOR_IDENTIFIER=x86 Family 6 Model 23 Stepping 10, GenuineIntel
PROCESSOR_LEVEL=6
PROCESSOR_REVISION=170a

So is my processor architecture is x86? and not x86_64?

But http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=36500 says, Instruction Set 64-bit.Which one should I believe in?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 9 down vote accepted

The answer is: both. You have a processor that supports the x86_64 (a.k.a. x64, amd64, em64t, IA-32e, IA-64t, …) instruction family and the x86_32 (a.k.a. IA-32, i686, Pentium, …) instruction family. The intel web site reports a 64-bit instruction set, indicating x86_64, but all such processors also support the older 32-bit IA-32 instruction set (as well as even older 16-bit and 8-bit instruction sets).

Your operating system reports a 32-bit architecture because you're running a 32-bit version of the operating system. Since you can't install a 64-bit application on this OS, there would be no point in reporting a 64-bit architecture. But you could run a 64-bit version of Windows or other OS, and it would report an x86_64 architecture.

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1  
However, you cannot change between native 64-bit mode and 16-bit mode without a hard reset. –  Hello71 Jul 30 '10 at 0:43
    
Er, x84_64?.... –  Hello71 Aug 2 '10 at 15:05
    
@Hello71: fixed, thanks. –  Gilles Aug 2 '10 at 19:45
    
@Gilles Nice post! But wasn't 8086 16 bit processor from the start? 8088 was a bit modified version with 8 bit data bus, but its original datasheet clearly says 16bit internal architecture. Basically I'm asking for source on 8-bit instruction set. –  AndrejaKo Aug 2 '10 at 20:25
    
@AndrejaKo: there is some compatibility back to the 8008, which is pretty much 8-bit. But there's no single definition of processor bit size, it depends on what you're measuring (data bus width? instruction bus width? register size? arithmetic operand size? etc. and each of these may have several answers). The wikipedia articles can tell you a lot more than I can about the history of intel processors. –  Gilles Aug 2 '10 at 21:02

Download SecurAble and see what it says. It should say the actual maximum supported bit length of your processor.

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The instructions on Intel's site are correct, but depending on the architecture of OS you are using, you might be seeing what's "emulated" for a 32-bit OS by the processor.

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