64 bit X86 CPU

Posted on 2011-05-11
Last Modified: 2012-06-21
I have seen in some documentations about computers, where they say: servers with 64 bits x86 CPU ,32 bits with x86 CPU, and 64 bit processors.

Can someone explain what they mean by those numbers?
I thought they use "bits" just for memory size not for processors.

Question by:jskfan
    LVL 8

    Accepted Solution


    Please check the link
    LVL 11

    Assisted Solution

    64 bit simply means the CPU(Processor) has the ability to process data twice as fast as a 32 bit CPU.  However in order to fully take advantage of a 64 Bit processor you need to have a 64 Bit Operating System along with 64 Bit compiled applications.

    For a more detailed description check out this link:
    LVL 8

    Assisted Solution

    Hi Patmac951,

    Actually not very true because its more than twice;
    A 64-bit register can store 18 446 744 073 709 551 616 different values
    A 32-bit register can store 4,294,967,295

    Obviously this means 64 bit can do math with larger numbers, and be more efficient with smaller numbers

    Author Comment

    can you please explain the meaning of each statement:
    64 bits x86 CPU
    32 bits with x86 CPU
    64 bit processors.
    LVL 8

    Assisted Solution

    LVL 32

    Assisted Solution

    64 bits x86 CPU - this is not possible, because an x86 (32-bit) processor cannot run 64-bit OS's
    32 bits with x86 CPU - an x86 processor is 32-bit
    64 bit processors - all 64-bit processors (except for Intel Itanium) can run 32-bit OR 64-bit OS's.

    The processor is what provides support for 32-bit or 64-bit instructions.  Along with 64-bit instructions, only 64-bit hardware can run 64-bit software (including OS), and only 64-bit OS's can use more than 4GB of RAM (memory).

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