Overview of 64-bit Computing
64-bit Upgrade ConsultantsThanks to the release of Microsoft Windows 7, the business case for migrating to 64-bit processing has never seemed stronger. However, most IT administrators are predictably reluctant to take on a major migration task when the main benefits — improved dependability, scalability, and performance — are too intangible to evaluate with precision. As a Microsoft Gold Partner with years of background assisting companies to implement system-wide migration projects, Progent can help you to understand the risks and benefits of moving to 64-bit computing, design an efficient upgrade scheme that reduces productivity interruptions, and provide affordable, high-level remote engineering help while you upgrade the software powering your existing servers and desktops.

With most office IT systems, 64-bit computing is a great untapped power source. Intel and AMD, the leading CPU makers, have been incorporating 64-bit capability in their mainstream CPUs for years, so that all types of business computing hardware including notebooks, desktop PCs, high-powered workstations and advanced servers now have the ability to operate in 64-bit mode. However most of these in-place computers still host 32-bit software platforms.

The main reason for this common hesitation to join the 64-bit millennium is that the business benefit for updating in-place systems has seemed to be small in comparison to the work required. There is no automatic process to upgrade from a 32-bit to a 64-bit operating system. The enhancement demands a clean install, which calls for reinstalling current applications, backing up and restoring data files, and installing new 64-bit drivers. This requires thoughtful planning to carry out economically. Meanwhile, most office productivity software are currently offered only in 32-bit editions, so where's the benefit?

Advantages of Moving Up to 64-bit Processing
The benefits of 64-bit over 32-bit computing may seem subtle and difficult to define precisely, but they are real. The RAM allocation techniques used in 32-bit systems are essentially an engineering band-aid that limits stability. RAM-hungry programs are often not able to utilize free RAM because the operating system is unable to assign it effectively. This can be the cause of software shutting down or performing fitfully even though a machine appears to have ample available memory. In addition, 64-bit software platforms allow far more addressable memory than 32-bit systems and process more data per CPU cycle. You can also go from one RAM-hungry program to another faster when you are using a 64-bit environment. Basically, 64-bit processing makes systems more reliable, more expandable, and faster, which makes companies more productive.

Microsoft's 64-bit Computing Software
Microsoft's “x64” technology works with the 64-bit processors used in most servers and desktop PCs currently deployed in business networks. (Microsoft's "Itanium" software is restricted to special advanced Intel/AMD CPUs and is intended for environments that require massive multi-processing.) Prior to the release of Office 2010, the majority of Microsoft desktop applications such as 2007 Office and Visual Studio 2005 were available only in 32-bit versions, which can nevertheless be used on x64 Windows. The new generation of Office offers dramatic enhancements. As an example, Office Excel 2010 is available in a 64-bit edition that permits you to build spreadsheets with huge databases that are not restricted to the 2-Gbyte file size that hampers 32-bit editions of Office Excel.

Microsoft offers native x64 versions of many Microsoft Server System products, such as Windows Server 2008, Microsoft SQL Server 2008 and 2005, Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, Commerce Server, Microsoft BizTalk Server, plus System Center Operations Manager. Microsoft Windows Server x64 versions are priced and licensed the same as their 32-bit editions, so in most circumstances it costs nothing more for 64-bit server software or hardware.

For workstations, Microsoft supplies Windows 7 and Windows 8 in same-cost x64 versions that provide high dependability, capacity, and throughput. As with all upgrades from 32- to 64-bit operating systems, the upgrade can’t be done seamlessly. Every workstation and server requires a clean setup that involves reconfiguring application software, backing up and recovering data, and configuring 64-bit device drivers. In fact, for typical current desktop PCs, and for all PCs powered by Microsoft Windows XP, even the 64-bit version of Windows 7 or 8 will require you to carry out a clean installation. Consequently, there will never be a better time to migrate to 64-bit computing on the desktop, since it will require little extra effort.

How Progent Can Assist Your Business to Migrate to 64-bit Processing
In addition to helping you to understand the practical benefits, expenses, and technical variables associated with upgrading to 64-bit computing, Progent's Microsoft Gold-certified consultants can help you design, document, implement, manage, and repair a system-wide migration to 64-bit server and desktop operating systems and applications. Progent can help you pilot your 64-bit infrastructure to verify that it supports all of the key 32-bit programs that you want to retain as well as the new 64-bit versions of software you wish to run. If moving to Microsoft Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 is included in your x64 migration strategy, Progent's certified Windows 7 experts, Windows 8.1 migration consultants, and Windows 10 testing and migration consultants can assist your company to determine which workstation hardware and applications can or ought to be retained, and outline a migration procedure that is minimally disturbing to your business productivity.

Additional ways Progent's consultants can help you to migrate to 64-bit computing include:

  • Progent's experience providing online network consulting and support can save your business effort and money over the course of your x64 upgrade, and Progent's experience cooperating with internal IT staffs and delivering technical information transfer to them can increase the effectiveness of your support staff.

  • Progent's certified Cisco CCIE network consultants can verify that your network architecture is optimized to accommodate your x64 processing solution, that it is simple to monitor, manage, and troubleshoot, and that it provides a high degree of security and robustness.

  • Progent's disaster recovery consulting professionals can assist you in developing and testing a disaster recovery strategy that includes your x64 servers. Progent's Microsoft certified Microsoft System Center System Center Data Protection Manager support professionals can assist you to configure System Center System Center Data Protection Manager to support near-continuous online backup with the advantage of rapid data recovery.

  • Progent's CISM, CISSP, and GIAC certified network security engineers can help you develop a company-wide security plan that deploys some of the new security technologies included with 64-bit servers. Progent can also perform security vulnerability checking to evaluate or verify your network's adherence to industry or government security standards.

  • Progent's virtualization experts can show you how to utilize 64-bit virtual server solutions to leverage your hardware, simplify administration, enhance reliability, cut colocation and hosting costs, and reduce recovery time in the event of a catastrophic breakdown.

  • Progent's online instruction can help bring your network support staff and your desktop workers up to speed rapidly and affordably by providing online virtual training specialized for your network requirements and business processes.
Contact Progent for Expertise in Migrating to x64 Computing
To find out additional information about how Progent can help your business to upgrade to x64 processing, call 1-800-993-9400 or see Contact Progent.