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Which Vista (32 bit or 64 bit) is best for my 4GB memory computer?


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#1 barrett_76

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Posted 29 May 2009 - 06:46 PM

I'm finally getting around to replacing my buggy hard drive and am taking the opportunity to get a newer OS as well (I'm currently running XP Home SP3 which was an upgrade from ME)

I've read a lot about how 32 bit Windows OS's don't get the full benefit of 4GB of memory due to reserving address space for graphics memory and other devices(http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/929605) and that the maximum memory available in 32-bit versions of Windows Vista is typically 3.12 GB. Looking at my system info as it runs now with XP, the OS only sees 3.5GB (3584MB) of my 4GB.

Seeing as how some of the info I was reading is probably outdated and things might be different now, I was hoping I could get a definitive answer from the experts as to what the best version of Vista would be for my computer and make the best use of my memory. 32 bit or 64 bit? (assuming my cpu and other components could run 64). Or if someone has a similar build, I'd appreciate you telling me how well yours performs with Vista 32 or Vista 64.

I mainly use this computer for gaming (MMOs like Guild Wars and City of Heroes). Here's my rig:


Mainboard: DFI LanParty 875P-T
Chipset: Intel i875P
CPU: 3.0 GHz Pentium 4 630 (EM64T)
Memory: 4GB OCZ PC3200 DDR 400MHz
Video Card: 256MB Nvidia GeForce 6800 GS (AGP)
Hard Drive: 250 GB Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 SATA (3Gb/s, 16MB cache buffer)
OS: Windows XP Home Ed. 5.01.2600 SP3
DirectX: 9.0c
BIOS: Award (03/25/05) Phoenix Technologies 6.00 PG

Please let me know if you need more info.

Thanks in advance,
Mike

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#2 maki2012

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Posted 30 May 2009 - 11:31 AM

A x64 can recognize more memory, but what you are playing doesn't need all of that memory.

Example:
I can rip a DVD, play a game (uses about 1 gig of memory), and maybe have iTunes running at the same time.

My comp has at least .5 - 1.5 gb of ram left over.

Guild Wars- Reccomended ram is 512 mb
City of Heroes- Reccomended ram is 512 mb

Go with the one you want. If you are a serious multitasker, get the x64. If not, go with the cheapest one.

*Note*
Some programs are not yet compatible with x64 OS's

#3 barrett_76

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Posted 30 May 2009 - 11:59 AM

Thanks maki2012.

I think I'm going to go with the 32 bit Vista Home Premium. I agree. I don't think the compatibility headaches will be worth what would probably be a minimal increase in memory usage for this particular build. This computer which is almost 3 years old and will eventually become my second computer when I finally get a laptop.

#4 maki2012

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Posted 30 May 2009 - 01:05 PM

I haven't run into too many compatibility issues, but that's just me. One thing I do miss is Zone Alarm, which doesn't cover x64 bit OS's.

Glad I could help!




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