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HI, Is it possible to install windows xp 64bit over an xp 32bit installation, like an upgrade as opposed to a new format, for the purpose of keeping all the data on the hard disk as I have no way to back the data up?

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Sorry to say, but you really should backup the data and reinstall from scratch. Trying to mix architectures is either doomed to fail, or just won't work. Reinstallation to change OS architecture is a good practice (and required for many) no matter which operating system is used.

If you have no way to back up your data, that is a problem you need to resolve ASAP. Failure happens, plan for it and be ready when it does. An external USB hard drive shouldn't be a budget buster, it's well worth the price for peace of mind.

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+1 for pointing out that backups are needed – mihi Aug 22 '09 at 21:34
+1 Totally agreed. – kkaploon Aug 22 '09 at 21:52

USB hard drives are getting ridiculously cheap. It sounds like it is time for you to invest in one.

You cannot upgrade from a 32bit OS to a 64bit OS. A completely fresh install is required.

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