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32bit / 64bit platform on a server ?

Posted on 2000-05-04
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Last Modified: 2010-04-27
can i change the platform of my server from 32bit
to 64bit , and the other way ?
what this change means ?
:)
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Question by:makoryan1
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Otta earned 50 total points
ID: 2777709
> can i change the platform of my server from 32bit to 64bit, and the other way?

Yes, you can change from 32-bit hardware to 64-bit hardware, and vice-versa, if you can afford the money to buy new hardware.

> what this change means ?

A "64-bit" computer processes 64 bits at a time, i.e., "load one 64-bit word" or "add one 64-bit word to another 64-bit word",
If that's what your computer-program needs to do, doing it 64-bits at a time is much faster, i.e. C64 = A64 + B64,
where each variable is a 64-bit word.

However, if you only have 32-bit words, then you could define 64-bit "long-words":

  A64 = (AA32 * 2**32 + AB32)
  B64 = (BA32 * 2**32 + BB32)

(where AA32 and AB32 and BA32 and BB32 are 32-bit words)

So, the sum (A64+B64) can be calculated/stored as:

    (AA32+BA32) * 2**32 + (AB32+BB32)

(assuming that each "partial-sum" does fit into a 32-bit word!)

Multiplication is more algebraically "complex".


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by:dbrunton
ID: 2778325
Do you mean you want a 32 bit server OS or a 64 bit server OS or are you referring to the hardware part of the server?

In the hardware part the PCI connections are generally 32 bit pathways but  64 bit pathways are available on some motherboards and cards.  This - the 64 bit pathway - enables data to be piped twice as fast as the 32 bit pathway.

A 32 bit CPU can address 4 Gb of memory which is reasonable for most systems but may not be enough for some server systems.

The Pentium is a 32 bit chip and can address this amount of memory but most motherboard support don't seem to go over 768 Mb.

A 64 bit CPU can address an even more monstrous - don't have the figure - amount of memory.

The new touted CPU - what is it's name - from Intel is a 64 bit CPU.

To properly use a 64 bit system a 64 bit OS is needed.  There are very few of these available at present.  I believe Linux is one and there may be an NT version.

64 bit calculations can be done on a 32 bit CPU as Otta has shown.
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by:magarity
ID: 2778869
The 64bit CPU from Intel is not yet on the market and no, linux has no plans to move to 64 bit processing yet.  NT does not do 64 bits either.  You'll have to get a mainframe computer to get 64 bits these days.

It's not a server issue anyway, you'd need 64 bit data processing to do faster atom bomb simulations or something like that.
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by:Otta
ID: 2781500
> A 32 bit CPU can address 4 Gb of memory

The IBM System/390 mainframe is a 32-bit system, but it has extensions to address literally millions of "address-spaces", where each of these address-spaces is 4GB in size.

So, your statement is true, but it also understates the capability of some 32-bit systems.
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by:dbrunton
ID: 2782092
> A 32 bit CPU can address 4 Gb of memory

>> The IBM System/390 mainframe is a 32-bit system, but it has extensions to address literally millions of "address-spaces", where each of these address-spaces is 4GB in size.

>> So, your statement is true, but it also understates the capability of some 32-bit systems.

>>> True.  The Pentium's can do something similar too but can't remember exact terminology for it.
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