Overview of 64-bit Processing
64-bit Upgrade ConsultantsThe release of Microsoft Office 2010 represented a milestone in information technology. After that, all of Microsoft's most popular operating systems, application servers, and office productivity software have been available in 64-bit versions for the same price as the 32-bit editions. This includes Exchange Server, SQL Server, SharePoint, System Center Operations Manager, and other key platforms.

Meanwhile, all server, workstation, and laptop computers sold in the last few years already have the ability to run in 64-bit mode. As a Microsoft Partner with years of experience helping businesses carry out network-wide upgrades, Progent can help you understand the costs and benefits of moving to 64-bit processing, design an efficient migration strategy that minimizes operational disruptions, and provide affordable, expert remote support to assist you in upgrading your existing computers and software.

The advantages of 64-bit computing go beyond gigantic spreadsheets. Software is more stable, system performance improves, memory capacity expands, security can be more extensive, and more servers can be consolidated through virtualization. These advantages equate to more uptime, increased productivity, better data protection, and lower equipment costs. Yet for most small businesses, 64-bit computing is still a great untapped resource.

Sticking with 32-bit software and under utilizing 64-bit hardware seems to make no business sense, but in fact there are serious obstacles to migrating to 64-bit computing that have prompted companies to hold back. There is no seamless path for replacing a 32-bit operating system with a 64-bit equivalent. The upgrade requires a clean installation, which means reinstalling existing applications, backing up and restoring data, and installing new 64-bit drivers. In some cases, it can be difficult or impossible to find 64-bit drivers for older peripherals. To avoid business disruption and minimize technical risk, a 64-bit migration demands careful planning and extensive experience.

Benefits of Moving Up to 64-bit Processing
The benefits of 64-bit vs. 32-bit computing may seem subtle and hard to define precisely, yet they are real. The memory partitioning schemes used in 32-bit platforms are basically a technical afterthought that undermines stability. Memory-hungry applications are often unable to utilize free memory since the operating system is unable to allocate it efficiently. This can be the cause of programs shutting down or running erratically even when a machine appears to have ample available RAM. In addition, 64-bit operating systems support far more addressable RAM than 32-bit systems and process more data per CPU cycle. You can also jump from one RAM-hungry application to another faster when you are using a 64-bit environment. Basically, 64-bit computing makes systems more reliable, more scalable, and more efficient, which in turn makes companies more productive.

Microsoft's 64-bit Computing Support
Microsoft's x64 technology supports the 64-bit processors found in virtually all servers and desktop PCs currently installed in business IT environments. (Microsoft's 64-bit "Itanium" software is restricted to a few high-end Intel and AMD CPUs processors and is designed for applications that require massive multi-processing.) Prior to the release of Office 2010, most Microsoft desktop applications including Microsoft Office 2007 and Visual Studio 2005 were offered solely in 32-bit editions, which can still be used on x64 platforms. The latest generation of Microsoft Office offers dramatic enhancements. For example, Excel 2010 is available in a 64-bit version that allows you to create spreadsheets with huge databases that are not restricted to the 2-Gbyte file size imposed by previous versions of Office Excel.

Microsoft offers native x64 versions of key Microsoft Server System products, such as Windows Server 2008, Microsoft SQL Server 2008 and 2005, Exchange Server 2007, Microsoft Commerce Server, Microsoft BizTalk Server, plus System Center Operations Manager. Microsoft Windows Server 64-bit versions are priced the same as 32-bit counterparts, so typically it costs nothing extra for 64-bit server software or hardware.

For client computers, Microsoft supplies Windows 7 and Windows 8 in same-cost 64-bit editions that offer advanced stability, capacity, and throughput. Like all upgrades from 32- to 64-bit platforms, the move up cant be done without effort. Every desktop PC and server needs a clean installation that involves reinstalling applications, saving and restoring data, and installing 64-bit drivers. In fact, for most current workstations, and for every PC running Microsoft Windows XP, the 32 or 64-bit version of Microsoft Windows 7 or Windows 8 requires you to carry out a clean installation. This being the case, there will never be a better time to upgrade to 64-bit processing on the workstation, since it will require little additional work.

How Progent Can Help Your Business to Upgrade to 64-bit Computing
In addition to helping your organization to understand the practical benefits, costs, and technical variables attached to upgrading to 64-bit processing, Progent's Microsoft-certified engineers can help you design, document, implement, administer, and troubleshoot a network-wide migration to 64-bit server and client OS software and applications. Progent can help you pilot your 64-bit infrastructure to make sure it supports all of the key 32-bit applications that you intend to keep as well as the latest 64-bit editions of applications you plan to install. If adopting Microsoft Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 is part of your x64 migration strategy, Progent's Windows 7 engineers, Windows 8.1 consultants, and Windows 10 evaluation and migration consultants can help your company to determine which workstation hardware and programs can or should be retained, and outline an upgrade procedure that is minimally disruptive to your network operations.

Other ways Progent can help you to migrate to 64-bit processing include:

  • Progent's expertise providing online computer consulting and troubleshooting can save your business time and money during your 64-bit upgrade, and Progent's background working with internal support personnel and delivering technical knowledge transfer to them can increase the effectiveness of your network support team.

  • Progent's certified Cisco CCIE network engineers can make sure that your network architecture is optimized to accommodate your x64 computing solution, that it is simple to monitor, manage, and repair, and that it provides a high degree of security and robustness.

  • Progent's business continuity consulting professionals can help you in creating and validating a workplace recovery plan that includes your x64 servers. Progent's Microsoft certified Microsoft System Center System Center Data Protection Manager consulting professionals can help you to configure System Center SCDPM to support near-continuous remote backup with the capability of rapid system restoration.

  • Progent's CISM and CISA certified network security consultants can assist you develop a company-wide security plan that deploys some of the new security technologies included with 64-bit servers. Progent can also carry out security vulnerability checking to evaluate or verify your network's adherence to industry or government security standards.

  • Progent's virtualization experts can help you utilize 64-bit virtual server solutions to save money on hardware, simplify management, enhance dependability, lower colocation expenses, and reduce recovery time in case of a disaster.

  • Progent's online training classes can help get your network management team and your desktop workers up to speed rapidly and cost-effectively by delivering remote webinars customized for your network environment and operational procedures.
Contact Progent to Get Help Upgrading to x64 Processing
To learn more details about how Progent can help your business to upgrade to 64-bit computing, call 1-800-993-9400 or see Contact Progent.

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