[SATLUG] 32-bit vs. 64-bit

Ernest De Leon edeleonjr at gmail.com
Thu May 22 10:33:00 CDT 2008


I have several machines with 4GB of RAM several with 2GB.  I run 32 bit on
all but the single server.  64 bit will gain you nothing if you don't have
4GB of RAM or more *and* the applications you run are specifically written
to take advantage of a 64 bit machine (this is in addition to the OS being
64 bit.)  On the application side, you will find many more issues with 64
bit versions (such as the incompatibilities you see with Flash.)  There are
always work arounds, but they are often kludgey and break with each kernel
upgrade.  I would say that on a laptop, you will see more 'trouble' than you
will benefits with going to 64 bit.  While you will not be able to address
all of your RAM with 32 bit, you should be able to address around 3.5 GB
(give or take a few hundred MB.)  That should be more than enough to power
Ubuntu.  I would even venture to say that 2GB is plenty unless you are
virtualizing things on the laptop.  Memory is usually not the show stopper
for laptops...the main bottle necks of laptops are (often) slower FSB
speeds, smaller caches and slower (5400 rpm) hard drives.  Even though I
have 4GB of RAM on my Dell M1210, I still run 32bit Ubuntu.  The extra ~1.5
GB is better than nothing.

Ernest

On Thu, May 22, 2008 at 7:44 AM, Justin Burdette <justin.burdette at gmail.com>
wrote:

> I'm running a dual-core Athlon64 with the 32-bit version of OpenSUSE 10.3.
> My machine has 4GB of RAM and no problems seeing it all. I haven't had any
> issues running anything, at least nothing related to the
> processor/memory/base OS. (Really, my only problem is no sound in Unreal
> Tournament and not being able to run Armagetron...but with WoW, I'm still
> happy)
>
> Justin
>
> On 5/22/08, pixelnate at gmail.com <pixelnate at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > Hey guys, I recently made the leap to Hardy Heron by way of an upgrade
> > from Gutsy, and I am starting to think that I might want to do a clean
> > install instead, and I have a few questions about the
> > benefits/detriments of the 32-bit vs. 64-bit versions. I am currently on
> > a 64-bit install, and I have run into a few problems: I cannot install
> > Opera and the Flash plugin needs to use nspluginwrapper to work in a
> > 64-bit Firefox., among others. So I am thinking about going back to a
> > 32-bit system.
> >
> > My laptop currently has 2GB of RAM and I want to upgrade to 4GB. Will
> > that be a problem with a 32-bit system? Will I be able to access all
> > that memory? Will my machine be any slower? Will the power management
> > give me any more battery life (long shot, but I had to ask)? Any there
> > any reasons why I should want to stay on a 64-bit system? Any real
> > benefits on a laptop?
> >
> > Laptop specs: 1.5Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo T5250, 2GB RAM, Santa Rosa
> > chipset.
> >
> >
> > Thanks,
> >
> > Nate
> >
> >
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-- 
Ernest de Leon
http://www.smbtechadvice.com

"They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety
deserve neither liberty nor safety." - A common 18th Century sentiment
voiced by Benjamin Franklin

"A patriot must always be ready to defend his country against his
government." - Edward Abbey

"All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing." -
Edmund Burke, English statesman and political philosopher (1729-1797)


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