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Yes, Windows 7 64bit was released when the 32bit version came out - but I think what you're looking for information about the 64 bit WoW client.
You will need a 64bit Windows 7 OS in order to benefit from the 64 bit WoW client.
Head over to games, gaming and hardware if you need to reply or want a faster and more in-depth answer.
64bit OS vs 32bit OS is not double the speed.
The 64bit OS provides a wider address access from the CPU to the memory. So that the CPU can access 64bits of data at a time versus 32 bits of data.
At 32 bits the CPU can only access at most 4GB of data. Which is why installing more than that on a 32 bit OS is a complete waste of memory.
While 64 bit can access an amount of memory that no motherboard can even handle today.
Edited by Keynar on 2/4/2012 9:21 PM PST
It is fully functional for years. Assuming you are using 32 bit OS, you will need to reinstall the entire OS as upgrading is from 32 bit to 64 bit is not possible. If you are on vista or 7, then you can simply re-enter your product key as it works on both 32 bit and 64 bit version (just not at the same time). Shall windows activition fails, call them, state that you reinstalled the OS from 32bit to 64bit without any hardware changes and they will help you activite it.
Note that you will need the appropriate disk or ISO file that matches the product key. If the OS came with the system, you will need to check which version of the OS it is or it will reject the product key upon installation.
The 64bit application should merely just take advantage of your computer having more than 4GB of RAM; so unless you meet this criteria I don't think you will notice anything. However, I did notice my RAM usage go up very slightly after running the 64 bit version. I'm not sure what method you are using to observe performance, but you can try put WoW into windowed mode, right click some empty space on the desktop, click gadgets and add the CPU meter and then watch the little needle for the RAM counter in the top right.
What I don't understand is why are the 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows entirely separate products? On Mac OS it's simply a boot switch… one $30 purchase nets you both. Not bashing or anything, just genuinely curious; is there a legitimate reason for Microsoft to do this?
Well, when you buy the 'box' product it comes with both versions. I think you technically can install both 32bit and 64bit and do a boot switch (I remember accidentally installing windows XP twice and then being prompted 'choose' every time I turned on the computer, so I think it's possible with Windows 7).
I guess selling it this way means when it comes to installation time you'll pick one over the other; if you are able to run a 64bit windows 7 you won't want to run the 32bit version anyway - so a boot switch is kind of unnecessary...
Hmm, makes me wonder, I've never owned a Mac before but now I'm curious why they give the option as a boot switch. In Windows 7's case the 64bit is superior to the 32bit, but does the 32bit/64bit in the Mac have pros and cons when it comes to comparing between each other perhaps?
Well, the current release (10.7) will only run on 64-bit Macs but the 32-bit mode is kept around for a handful of people with compatibility problems (usually related to old 32-bit hardware or peripheral drivers).
The previous release (10.6) was able to run on both 32-bit and 64-bit Macs, so the switch allows a single install disc to work on any Intel Mac, and as a result, the same applies to any Mac OS installation. With 10.6, you could have a portable HD with Mac OS installed and it would boot on any Intel Mac flawlessly since all the necessary drivers are already present. While this is still possible for the most part with 10.7, you won't be able to boot it on any Core Duo-era Macs.
So all in all, it's simply more convenient that way.
There is no good technical reason I can think of why Microsoft would do this, other than space limitations on the media the OS comes on. The 64-bit files will be a little larger (not double the size) but not every file has to be duplicated. Although to be fair, probably every exe and dll has to change.
The 64 bit client will cause the Blizzard Downloader App to fail.
But you can get around that by removing the 64 bit components and then downloading the new ones afterwards. If you regularly use >4GB of memory and you have a 64 bit OS, you should definitely get the 64 bit client.
90 Night Elf Hunter
I use opensuse linux 64 bit, in particular open suse linux 64 bit 11.4. They are up to 12 now, but I've not bothered yet.
I started using it again when Blizzard broke my sound, in Windows Vista 32 bit, with the 2.3 patch (the one that added Blizzard's own native "vent" like thing.)
At that point I no longer had sound in wow, on my old audigy LS card. So I thought hmm, what if I installed linux again for
jollies since Wow is supposed to run on it?
I found that Wow ran great, after I figured it out. So I've been playing ever since patch 2.3 with great sound in Linux.
The week that the 64 bit client came out, I tried that. Unlike many users of Windows (the supposed Wow native OS), I had zero problems after dumping the 64 bit binary into my wow folder. I then pointed my Wine 64 bit shorcut to the 64 bit Wow64.exe, then was off and running.
It could be my imagination, but it seems smoother with the 64 bit client. I'm also using more of my 2 gig of system ram consistently than I did with the 32 bit client. Things may be better somehow since I'm in a 64 bit operating system, with 64 bit Wine and now playing 64 bit Wow.
This computer is also pretty outdated now; I'd love to see how the game played on a power house computer under linux.
After playing Wow in Linux, I found myself booting to windows vista less and less. I think now I've not been
back inside of it in over 2 years. Eventually I ended up
doing everything in Linux, for free and usually better.
For instance, sometimes I had trouble with windows
media sharing and the xbox 360. Under linux, I simply
use ushare and stream videos to the xbox in the same
way (but very smoothly and trouble free. )
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