32bit and 64bit Linux

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darrendazzler

Guest
I'm a little confused with 32 and 64bit software versions of Linux, is this a software concern or a hardware issue. I mean do I need 64bit hardware to run Linux in 64bit, my computer is about 6 years old and I have always downloaded the 32bit versions of Linux. When choosing a download for Ubuntu I noticed it said 64bit for systems with more than 2GB of memory. My computer has 8GB of memory does this mean I can use the 64bit version of Ubuntu or not ?
 


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ryanvade

Guest
I'm a little confused with 32 and 64bit software versions of Linux, is this a software concern or a hardware issue. I mean do I need 64bit hardware to run Linux in 64bit, my computer is about 6 years old and I have always downloaded the 32bit versions of Linux. When choosing a download for Ubuntu I noticed it said 64bit for systems with more than 2GB of memory. My computer has 8GB of memory does this mean I can use the 64bit version of Ubuntu or not ?
The main difference between 32bit and 64bit versions of software is the max width of memory buses they can use. 32bit is maxed at 4 octets where 64bit uses 8. What this means for average users is the amount of ram a system has access to. 32bit operating system can use a max of 4 GB by default. 64bit operating systems can use 17 Billion GB (if a system existed today that had that much). 64bit systems also have access to larger virtual memory and more security features(hardware security).

Basically if you have more than 4 GB ram use a 64bit Operating system.
 
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darrendazzler

Guest
Thanks, guess I need to download the 64 bit version then :)

I was always under the assumption the hardware (motherboard/chip) had to be '64bit' LOL
 
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darrendazzler

Guest
This is on the Linux Mint website, it says the 64bit version requires 'a 64bit processor', does that not mean 64bit hardware ?


System requirements:


  • x86 processor (Linux Mint 64-bit requires a 64-bit processor. Linux Mint 32-bit works on both 32-bit and 64-bit processors).
  • 512 MB RAM (1GB recommended for a comfortable usage).
  • 5 GB of disk space (20GB recommended).
  • Graphics card capable of 800×600 resolution (1024×768 recommended).
  • DVD drive or USB port
 
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ryanvade

Guest
This is on the Linux Mint website, it says the 64bit version requires 'a 64bit processor', does that not mean 64bit hardware ?

System requirements:


  • x86 processor (Linux Mint 64-bit requires a 64-bit processor. Linux Mint 32-bit works on both 32-bit and 64-bit processors).
  • 512 MB RAM (1GB recommended for a comfortable usage).
  • 5 GB of disk space (20GB recommended).
  • Graphics card capable of 800×600 resolution (1024×768 recommended).
  • DVD drive or USB port
That goes back to the 8 octet memory bus which is only available on a 64bit processor. So it is both a hardware and a software requirement.
 
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arochester

Guest
You can run 32 bit Linux on a 32 bit computer or a 64 bit computer, but you can only run 64 bit Linux on a 64 bit computer.

I was always under the assumption the hardware (motherboard/chip) had to be '64bit' LOL
Yes, it is a hardware thing.
 
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darrendazzler

Guest
So if my computer has 8GB, does that mean its 64bit by default, or is it a case of the intel chip/motherboard being 64bit ?
 
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darrendazzler

Guest
Thanks for the link, does that method tell you what Linux version you are running or the hardware only.
 
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Luna Crane

Guest
Why isn't there an on-the-fly convertor so you can use 32-bit on a 64-bit system directly, without compatibility libraries? In essence, just have the 32-bit program only use half of each of the 64-bit memory buses? (I'm a bit vague on the specifics, but I get the impression it's a matter of space use.)
 
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ryanvade

Guest
Why isn't there an on-the-fly convertor so you can use 32-bit on a 64-bit system directly, without compatibility libraries? In essence, just have the 32-bit program only use half of each of the 64-bit memory buses? (I'm a bit vague on the specifics, but I get the impression it's a matter of space use.)
If we just consider memory usage between 32bit and 64bit program I might be able to explain it. If you use a 32bit program on a 32bit system then the Operating system is able to allocate memmory that works wiht the 32bit program. (Integers on a 32bit system are different than on 64bit systems. ) If you try to run 32bit on a 64bit (with no compatibility) then the Operating system has to trya nd manage 32bit memory allocation in a 64bit environment. Mismatches of memory block allocation would almost always occure leading to data loss and system crashes. A converter between 32bit and 64bit when the program is running is impossible.
 
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darrendazzler

Guest
So according to the info on this post i have a 64bit comp as i have 8GB, but i ran Windows Visat 32bit and am now running Ubuntu 14.10 32bit on it with few problems !!
 
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ryanvade

Guest
So according to the info on this post i have a 64bit comp as i have 8GB, but i ran Windows Visat 32bit and am now running Ubuntu 14.10 32bit on it with few problems !!
How much ram is showing in the System Monitor?
 
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Yesyesloud

Guest
It's not "according to the info on this post". 32 bit is different from 64 bit for many technical reasons, memory management being one of them.

Your hardware will benefit more from a 64 bit OS, as it would also run 32 bit software (compatibility libraries are installed by default generally).

However, if you have a 32 bit OS running on 8GB ram, expect problems or poor performance when processes exceed the memory limits assigned to them.
 
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darrendazzler

Guest
I'm going to install Mint 64bit in a few days so will report back then :)
 
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darrendazzler

Guest
Well well well, just installed Mint 64 bit and........I'm still alive and the world is still revolving around the sun.....it worked :)

I assume that I do have a 64bit computer after all, wow that was a cheap upgrade from 32bit to 64bit, some free info from here and a free download of Mint64 :)

I am a happy bunny
 


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