difference between 32bit and 64bit processors/laptops

I wanted to know the difference between 32bit and 64bit processors/laptops?

I'm considering purchasing one of two NETBOOKS and I have not decided because I wanted someone's comments and possibly experience with the following two items.

http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product.aspx?Prodid=11738264&whse=bc&Ne=5000141+4000000&N=4047229 4294898679&Mo=1&No=1&Nr=P_CatalogName:BC&Ns=P_Price|1||P_SignDesc1&lang=en-us&Sp=C&ecat=bc|84|56670&topnav=

http://shop.costco.com/en/In-The-Warehouse/Electronics/Computers/Laptops/AcerAspire_AO722.aspx

There is about a $50 difference between the Acer (cheaper in price)  vs. the HP model.
vulture71Asked:
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vmaganCommented:
I would go with the HP. Better brand than Acer. Acer are cheap laptops and there support is the worse. The HP has 802.11bgn which means it is also compatible with older style wireless access points. Acer only has 802.11n. Hp has a 64bit processor and 4gb of ram so it will see 4 gb of ram. The Acer is a 32bit with 4 gb of ram but the machine will only recognize 3gb.

64bit processor recognize either 8gb or 16gb I always forget.
32 bit processor recognize only up to 3gb.

HP better choice with longer battery life too.
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wheramiCommented:
I didn't look at the technical specs of these processors but I believe they are both capable of running 64 bit operating systems. If you  are going to use more then 4GB of memory then you need a 64 bit operating system to be able to address memory above 4GB. If you are only going to have 4 GB of memory then 32 bit operating system will suffice. My preference is the HP
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David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
The HP has a more advanced processor and integrated video. Go with the HP
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Darr247Commented:
The Acer appears to be a single-core 1GHz CPU; the HP is definitely a 1.3GHz dual-core. I would go for the HP just on that basis.
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nobusCommented:
the difference, as far as memory adressing is concerned, is that a 32-bit OS recognises upt o 4 GB ram adresses :  a computer said to be "32-bit" also usually allows 32-bit memory addresses; a byte-addressable 32-bit computer can address 232 = 4,294,967,296 bytes of memory,  (fro m: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memory_address )
a 64 bit can adress 2 exponent 64 adresses :   (from :  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/64-bit )
In principle, a 64-bit microprocessor can address 16 exabytes of memory. In practice, 64-bit processors address less memory.
 
For example, the AMD64 architecture as of 2011 allows 52 bits for physical memory and 48 bits for virtual memory.[4] These limits allow memory sizes of 4 PB (4 × 10245 bytes) and 256 TB (256 × 10244 bytes), respectively. A PC cannot contain 4 petabytes of memory (due to the physical size of the memory chips, if nothing else) but AMD envisioned large servers, shared memory clusters, and other uses of physical address space that might approach this in the foreseeable future, and the 52-bit physical address provides ample room for expansion while not incurring the cost of implementing 64-bit physical addresses. Similarly, the 48-bit virtual address space was designed to provide more than 65,000 times the 32-bit limit of 4 GB (4 × 10243 bytes), allowing room for later expansion without incurring the overhead of translating full 64-bit addresses.

in practice, the OS will limit the max adressable ram, see the windows 7 limits here  :

http://www.zdnet.com/blog/hardware/max-memory-limits-for-64-bit-windows-7/4254
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