We often see Windows 32-Bit or 64-Bit if we are going to download a software on the internet. The terms of 32-bit and 64-bit are Windows edition.
|Windows XP 64-Bit Edtion logo.|
The other differences relate to memory accessibility, memory management, and enhanced security features. For example, the security features that are available in the 64-bit versions of Windows Vista include the following:
- Kernel Patch Protection
- Support for hardware-backed Data Execution Protection (DEP)
- Mandatory driver signing
- Removal of support for 32-bit drivers
- Removal of the 16-bit subsystem
|Windows 7 / 64-bit compatibility logo|
And also if you use many different hardware such as flash disk, game controllers, and so on, you are advised to use 32-bit version because a lot of hardware has only 32-bit drivers. In addition, you must install digitally signed hardware drive only on a 64-bit version to enhanced security of the computer.
These are the main differences example between the 32-bit versions of Windows Vista and the 64-bit versions of Windows Vista
|Architecture||Windows Vista, 32-bit versions||Windows Vista, 64-bit versions|
|System requirements|| |
1-gigahertz (GHz) 32-bit (x86) processor or 64-bit (x64) processor, 512 MB of RAM
|1-GHz 64-bit (x64) processor, 1 GB of RAM (4 GB recommended)|
A 32-bit version of Windows Vista can access up to 4 GB of RAM
|A 64-bit version of Windows Vista can access from 1 GB of RAM to more than 128 GB of RAM.|
|Memory access per edition||All 32-bit versions of Windows Vista can access up to 4 GB of RAM.|
Windows Vista Home Basic - 8 GB of RAM
Windows Vista Home Premium - 16 GB of RAM
Windows Vista Business - 128 GB of RAM or more
Windows Vista Enterprise - 128 GB of RAM or more
Windows Vista Ultimate - 128 GB of RAM or more
32-bit versions of Windows Vista use a software-based version of DEP.
|64-bit versions of Windows Vista support hardware-backed DEP.|
|Kernel Patch Protection (PatchGuard)||This feature is not available in 32-bit versions of Windows Vista.|
This feature is available in 64-bit versions of Windows Vista. Kernel Patch Protection helps prevent a malicious program from updating the Windows Vista kernel. This feature works by helping to prevent a kernel-mode driver from extending or replacing other kernel services. Also, this feature helps prevent third-party programs from updating (patching) any part of the kernel.
Unsigned drivers may
be used with 32-bit versions of Windows Vista.
|64-bit versions of Windows Vista require that all device drivers be digitally signed by the developer.|
|32-bit driver support|
32-bit versions of Windows Vista support 32-bit drivers that are designed for Windows Vista.
|64-bit versions of Windows Vista do not support 32-bit device drivers.|
|16-bit program support|
32-bit versions of Windows Vista support 16-bit programs, in part.
|64-bit versions of Windows Vista do not support 16-bit programs|
Table is taken from Microsoft Official Page.