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I have a 64-bit processor in my PC, but because of worries over application compatibility, up until now I have been using 32-bit Ubuntu (and 32-bit Vista because Dell wouldn't sell me 64-bit with my PC).

Is it possible for me to install 64-bit Ubuntu alongside 32-bit ubuntu and 32-bit Windows Vista, so I can choose between them at boot and share data, and without uninstalling my 32-bit Ubuntu?

My partitions are as follows

Drive 1: 10 GB Vista recovery partition (E:), 240 GB Windows NTFS parition (230 GB used, C:).

Drive 2: 167 GB Windows NTFS Partition (130 GB used, D: ), 8 GB swap partition, 13 GB / partition (6 GB used), 62 GB /home partition (20 GB used).

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5 Answers 5

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I don't see any reason why it wouldn't work.

also, hi!

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Yes.

You should have no problems doing what you want over the general problems of installing multiple operating systems. 32 bit and 64 bit generally have nothing special that would prevent them from multiple booting.

The only trouble you would have with sharing files would be if you choose Bitlocker or any other encryption system.

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Yes you can install them side by side. Just pop the CD in and partition as usual.

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It can be done.
You would probably carve out about 12-15 GB from the '/home' partition.
Should consider a backup of the 'home' data for safety.

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It can be done but why would you? The speed difference between with x86 and x86_64 instruction sets isn't worth the trouble. Just install 32 bit Ubuntu and don't worry about it.

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To have more than 3.5GB of RAM. That's reason #1. Some programs run significantly faster on 64 bit. That reason #2. –  Macha Nov 29 '09 at 10:00
    
First off, if you can manage to use 3.5 GB of RAM in Linux, I seriously hope you work for Dreamworks. I have 4 GB of memory and have never managed to use more than 2 GB. Open system monitor and see if you're actually using that much. Second, if you really need it, you can enable PAE in the kernel and use up to 64 GB of memory (yes in 32 bit mode). Third, the performance difference isn't noticable: tuxradar.com/content/ubuntu-904-32-bit-vs-64-bit-benchmarks Sure, the 64 bit version was generally faster, but by what, 1%? –  Brendan Long Nov 30 '09 at 0:42
    
Also, 64 bit Linuxes have been able to run 32 bit binaries for a seriously long time. Ubuntu even packages them nicely for you without bothering to tell you that flash and wine are 32 bit only (I think flash is actually finally 64 bit in Flash 10). –  Brendan Long Nov 30 '09 at 0:44

protected by Diago Nov 30 '10 at 17:53

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