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I'm using Vista, and installers often choose one of the two "Program Files" folders (regular or (x86).) When I have the choice (i.e., there is no installer) how should I choose? Does it ever matter?

(This question could probably be better tagged, but I'm not sure what it should be.)

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up vote 11 down vote accepted

Looks like you are using a 64-bit version of Vista (as am I). It should do this automatically but here it is:

64-bit in program files, 32-bit in the x86.

The separation is needed at times and should be withheld:

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No offense, I accepted Mike's because he have slightly more information (that it doesn't really matter). Thanks. – Eric Wilson Aug 25 '09 at 12:32
@Farmboy - I woul disagree with that assessment based on the votes. – BinaryMisfit Aug 25 '09 at 13:46
Diago - I've changed my acceptance on the basis of the link IPX Ares provided. – Eric Wilson Aug 25 '09 at 16:43

I don't believe it really matters because some programs that are 32 bit, will install in the Program Files (even though that's what the x86 folder is for). I believe its just for organization. So best practice would be

  • 64 bit= program files
  • 32 bit= program files x86
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Why the downvote? I'm ignorant of this stuff, If Mike is in error, let me know! – Eric Wilson Aug 25 '09 at 12:17
not sure... maybe for repeat? – RiddlerDev Aug 25 '09 at 12:28
perhaps i should have commented on IPXAres's answer instead of making my own. No harm intended there – Mike M Aug 25 '09 at 12:34
Looks like it does matter after some more digging (I did not know either). – RiddlerDev Aug 25 '09 at 12:41
aww man, now he goes back and picks yours. killing me ;) no worries, but that down vote hurt whoever you are! – Mike M Aug 25 '09 at 17:19

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