What is 64-bit?

What is a 64-bit?

In laymen terms, 64-bit means that a computer is equipped to process more applications at faster speeds. A 64-bit CPU processes information at faster speeds than the previous 32-bit.

Each bit can have two values so 64 bits can have 264 values and therefore makes this equivalent to over 18,000,000,000,000,000000 values, whereas 32 bits is equivalent to only over 4,000,000,000. (decimal base 10)

64-bit is a term that describes a generation of computers in which 64-bit processors are the normal standard of technology. In 2003 x86-64 and 64-bit PowerPC processor architectures were introduced into the mainstream personal computer arena but have existed in super computers since the 1970s. For more technical explanation see Wikkipedia

You can buy both hardware and software that is 64-bit. For example, you can get a 64-bit CPU, a 64-bit graphics card, a 64 bit motherboard. You can also buy a 32bit or 64 bit operating system and software to suit. You must be aware of compatibility issues when it comes to installing software on a 64-bit system. Not all 32-bit software will function on a 64 bit system with a 64-bit operating system, yet a 32-bit operating system will work on a 64-bit system.

Is Your Computer 64-bit Compatible?

To run 64-bit applications you need to have a 64-bit capable processor. Computer users need to know how many bit their computer is so they can format the hard drive of their computer and re-install the right operating system or install the most compatible software applications.

You can easily check this by performing the following steps:

1. Go to the start menu at the bottom left corner of your screen. (Windows Vista, Seven)

2. Click on the control panel link, then choose the system and maintenance icon or just system.

what is 64-bit

3. Click Performance Information and Tools as shown above in the screenshot.

4. Click View and print details. See the screenshot below.

64-bit information

If you have a 64-bit system and are running 64-bit Windows you will see this clearly under system type.
However if you are running 32-bit Windows you will see that is says your system is 64-bit capable.
If you have a 32-bit system you will see no reference to 64-bit.
If you cannot access Windows you can Google the model and make of your motherboard and CPU to see if they are 64-bit hardware.


  1. says

    The advantage of 64-bit is that some programs greatly benefit from 64-bit hardware. Also, it has backward compatibility that will handle most 32-bit software. But the main disadvantage of 64-bit architecture is that, relative to 32-bit architectures, the same data occupies more space in memory (due to longer pointers).