Overview of 64-bit Computing
64-bit Upgrade HelpThanks to the release of Microsoft Windows 7, the business justification for upgrading to 64-bit processing has never seemed stronger. Still, many IT managers are predictably hesitant to take on a sizable migration project when the main advantages — increased dependability, capacity, and performance — are too vague to evaluate precisely. Being a Microsoft Gold Partner with years of background helping companies to carry out system-wide upgrades, Progent can assist your company to assess the risks and rewards of adopting 64-bit computing, create an economical upgrade strategy that reduces business interruptions, and deliver cost-effective, expert online engineering help as you upgrade the system software running your existing computers.

For the majority of office networks, 64-bit computing is a giant unexploited power source. Both Intel and AMD, the top CPU chip makers, have been delivering 64-bit ability in their commodity CPUs for years, with the result that all classes of business computing hardware such as notebooks, desktop computers, high-powered workstations and advanced servers already possess the ability to operate in 64-bit mode. However the majority of these devices continue to run 32-bit operating systems.

The primary cause for this widespread reluctance to join the 64-bit revolution is that the real advantage for upgrading existing systems has appeared to be small in relation to the work required. There is no automatic process to migrate from a 32 to a 64-bit OS. The enhancement demands a clean install, which means reinstalling existing programs, saving and restoring data, and configuring new 64-bit drivers. This requires thoughtful planning to carry out efficiently. Furthermore, most office applications are still offered only in 32-bit editions, so where's the benefit?

Advantages of Moving Up to 64-bit Computing
The benefits of 64-bit vs. 32-bit processing may seem subtle and hard to define precisely, but they are real. The memory partitioning techniques utilized by 32-bit systems are basically a technical band-aid that limits system stability. RAM-hungry programs are often not able to access available memory because the operating system cannot assign it effectively. This can be the cause of software shutting down or performing fitfully even when a machine seems to have ample unused RAM. Also, 64-bit operating systems support much more addressable memory than 32-bit systems and process twice as much data per CPU cycle. You can also jump from one RAM-hungry program to another more quickly when using a 64-bit system. Fundamentally, 64-bit processing makes systems more reliable, more scalable, and faster, which in turn makes businesses more competitive.

Microsoft's 64-bit Computing Initiative
Microsoft's “x64” software supports the 64-bit CPUs used in virtually all servers and desktop PCs currently installed in business IT environments. (Microsoft's "Itanium" technology is restricted to special advanced CPUs and is designed for applications that require large-scale multi-processing.) Prior to the availability of Microsoft Office 2010, most Microsoft desktop applications including Microsoft Office 2007 and Visual Studio 2005 were available only in 32-bit versions, which can nevertheless be run on x64 Windows. The latest generation of Office delivers significant enhancements. As an example, Microsoft Office Excel 2010 is offered in a 64-bit version that permits you to create spreadsheets with enormous datasets that are not limited by the 2-Gbyte maximum file size that hampers 32-bit releases of Microsoft Office Excel.

Microsoft offers native x64 versions of key Microsoft Server System products, including Windows Server 2008 and 2003, Microsoft SQL Server 2008, Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, Microsoft Commerce Server 2007, Microsoft BizTalk Server, as well as System Center Operations Manager. Microsoft Windows Server x64 editions are priced identically to 32-bit versions, so typically you pay nothing extra for 64-bit server software or machines.

For desktop PCs, Microsoft offers Windows 7 and Windows 8 in same-cost x64 editions that provide high stability, capacity, and performance. As with all upgrades from 32-bit to 64-bit operating systems, the move up can’t be done without effort. Each workstation and server requires a clean installation that involves reconfiguring application software, backing up and recovering data, and installing 64-bit device drivers. On the other hand, for typical current desktop PCs, and for all PCs running XP, the 32 or 64-bit version of Windows 7 or Windows 8 requires you to perform a clean installation. Consequently, there has never been a better opportunity to move to 64-bit processing on the desktop, since it will involve scarcely any additional work.

How Progent Can Assist You to Migrate to 64-bit Processing
In addition to helping your organization to understand the practical advantages, costs, and technical risks attached to upgrading to 64-bit processing, Progent's Microsoft Gold-certified consultants can help you plan, document, implement, administer, and repair a system-wide migration to 64-bit server and client operating systems and applications. Progent can help you pilot your 64-bit environment to verify that it handles all of the important 32-bit programs that you want to retain as well as the latest 64-bit editions of applications you plan to install. If adopting Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 is included in your x64 upgrade plan, Progent's Windows 7 engineers, Windows 8.1 migration consultants, and Windows 10 planning and migration experts can assist you to determine which workstation hardware and applications can or should be preserved, and plan an upgrade procedure that is the least disturbing to your network operations.

Additional ways Progent can assist your business to upgrade to 64-bit processing include:

  • Progent's experience providing remote computer consulting and support can save your business time and money over the course of your x64 migration, and Progent's background cooperating with internal support staffs and delivering technical knowledge sharing to them can increase the efficiency of your support team.

  • Progent's Cisco CCIE network consultants can make sure that your network architecture is configured to support your x64 computing solution, that it is simple to track, administer, and troubleshoot, and that it offers a high level of security and robustness.

  • Progent's business continuity consultants can help you in creating and validating a workplace recovery strategy that incorporates your x64 servers. Progent's Microsoft certified Microsoft System Center System Center Data Protection Manager (SCDPM) consulting professionals can assist you to deploy System Center SCDPM to provide automated remote backup with the capability of fast data restoration.

  • Progent's CISM, CISSP, and GIAC certified security experts can help you develop a company-wide security plan that implements some of the new protection technologies included with 64-bit server platforms. Progent can also provide security vulnerability checking to evaluate or confirm your network's adherence to industry or government security standards.

  • Progent's virtualization experts can help you use 64-bit virtual server solutions to conserve hardware, simplify management, enhance dependability, lower colocation and hosting expenses, and reduce restoration time in case of a disaster.

  • Progent's online instruction can help bring both your IT support team and your office workers up to date rapidly and affordably by delivering remote virtual training specialized for your computing requirements and business processes.
Contact Progent to Get Help Upgrading to x64 Computing
To learn more details about how Progent's engineers can help your business to upgrade to x64 computing, call 1-800-993-9400 or see Contact Progent.