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Office & IE - 32bit or 64bit

Posted on 2014-03-20
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Last Modified: 2014-04-03
Should I be running 64bit office and/or ie on terminal servers for users to be using?  Currently I am running 32bit for both of these across the TS farm due to an existing business need, but pretty soon I will have the option to switch to 64bit.

Key points:
-  5 hp proliant g7 servers each with 16GB RAM.
-  Most of the users have a group policy on their machines forcing them to connect to one of these servers automatically upon log in.
-  These servers are physically hosted in a data center on the other side of town from the main office which is the source (the office that is) of about 75-80% of the network traffic.  The others are scattered all over the country and go over a WAN link to get to the datacenter.
-  Exchange is hosted by Microsoft, not locally.
-  At any given time users are using several tabs of ie including links for a home grown web application with a database back end which has a known memory leak causing some instances of ie to hang and start eating up 2 or more gigs of RAM even causing massive cpu spikes as well.  This also happens sometimes when users use IE/home grown app to upload a ton of files to different sites at any given time as part of their job.
-  At most there are about 55 sessions across the 5 TS's which when everything works correctly uses about 70% of the total RAM.
-  Current version of Office is 2013.

Naturally, the end user experience is the most important thing.
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Question by:spadmin1
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Expert Comment

by:Mutogi
ID: 39944332
i could beg to differ in the fact 64 is expandable for later, but some add-ons for office 2013 to behave natively.

i would go 64 if the OS is 64 and ram needs are more than 3 GB.

16GB Ram is child's play... 32GB minimum get the overhead and save a CPU cycle

;0)
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Assisted Solution

by:Schuyler Dorsey
Schuyler Dorsey earned 1000 total points
ID: 39944360
I would NEVER run 32 bit office.

Keep your OS as 64 bit sure. But not Microsoft Office. Many Office addins and integration does not work with the 64 bit version of Office. When you go to download Office, Microsoft themselves recommend you to use the 32 bit version no matter what OS you are using.
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Expert Comment

by:aadih
ID: 39945041
I would NEVER run 32 bit office. ~Schuyler Dorsey.

Did you not mean "64 bit" Office?

It's better to run 32 bit Office even on a 64 bit machine.

IE is a different matter. Both 32 bit and 64 bit versions are included in the OS.
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by:Schuyler Dorsey
ID: 39945054
^ Yes, I mean I would NEVER run 64 bit Office. Sorry for the confusion.
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by:aadih
ID: 39945061
No confusion; very clear, Schuyler Dorsey.  :-)
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Author Comment

by:spadmin1
ID: 39945590
Thanks guys.  To add, the users sessions are locked down pretty hard on the TS's.  For IE, I am trying to decide whether or not to switch their accessible shortcut to the 64bit version as they currently can only use the 32bit version.  However right now, the end user experience is average at best,  IE hangs for users randomly and does not perform very well.  I know there are a lot of variables that can contribute to this, but at a high level would you have your users use the 64bit version of IE in a terminal server environment?
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Accepted Solution

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masnrock earned 1000 total points
ID: 39947811
Use 32-bit IE and Office for now. Until the needed software, plugins, etc. are all 64 bit compatible AND stable within a 64 bit enviroment.
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