Preparing for 64-bit Computing
64-bit Migration ConsultantsWith the release of Windows 7, the business case for moving to 64-bit computing has never been stronger. However, many IT administrators are predictably hesitant to take on a significant upgrade task when the main benefits — increased stability, capacity, and speed — are excessively intangible to evaluate with precision. Being a Microsoft Partner with years of background assisting businesses to carry out system-wide upgrades, Progent can assist you to understand the risks and rewards of moving to 64-bit processing, create an efficient migration scheme that minimizes productivity interruptions, and provide affordable, expert remote engineering help while you upgrade the software powering your existing servers and desktops.

For the majority of office networks, 64-bit computing is a great untapped power source. Intel and AMD, the top CPU chip manufacturers, have been incorporating 64-bit capability in their mainstream CPUs for years, with the result that all classes of business computers including laptops, desktop computers, engineering workstations and advanced servers already possess the architecture to operate in 64-bit format. However the majority of these in-place devices continue to run 32-bit operating systems and applications.

The primary reason for this common reluctance to join the 64-bit revolution is that the real advantage for upgrading in-place computers has seemed to be modest in comparison to the effort needed. There is no automatic path to upgrade from a 32 to a 64-bit OS. The upgrade demands a clean installation, which calls for reinstalling current programs, backing up and restoring data files, and configuring new 64-bit drivers. This demands careful planning to carry out economically. Furthermore, most desktop applications are currently available only in 32-bit versions, so where's the benefit?

Advantages of Upgrading to 64-bit Computing
The benefits of 64-bit vs. 32-bit processing may seem vague and difficult to define precisely, yet they are significant. The RAM partitioning schemes used in 32-bit OS platforms are essentially an engineering afterthought that undermines stability. RAM-starved applications are often unable to utilize available memory since the operating system is unable to assign it efficiently. This can be the cause of programs freezing or running fitfully even though a computer appears to have ample unused RAM. Also, 64-bit software platforms support much more physical memory than 32-bit systems and crunch more data per CPU cycle. You can also jump from one memory-hungry application to another faster when using a 64-bit environment. Fundamentally, 64-bit computing makes systems more stable, more scalable, and faster, which makes companies more productive.

Microsoft's x64 Initiative
Microsoft's “x64” software works with the 64-bit CPUs used in virtually all computers now installed in business IT environments. (Microsoft's 64-bit "Itanium" software is restricted to special high-end Intel and AMD CPUs processors and is designed for applications that need massive multi-processing.) Prior to the availability of Office 2010, most Microsoft client applications such as 2007 Office and Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 were available only in 32-bit versions, which can nevertheless be used on x64 platforms. The latest generation of Microsoft Office 2010 offers dramatic enhancements. For example, Microsoft Excel 2010 is available in a 64-bit edition that allows you to create spreadsheets with enormous datasets that are not limited to the 2-Gbyte file size imposed by 32-bit versions of Office Excel.

Microsoft has developed native x64 versions of key Microsoft Server System products, such as Windows Server 2008, SQL Server 2008, Exchange Server 2010 and 2007, Commerce Server 2007, BizTalk Server, as well as Operations Manager. Windows Server 64-bit editions are priced and licensed identically to 32-bit counterparts, so typically you pay nothing more for 64-bit server operating systems or hardware.

For workstations, Microsoft supplies Windows 7 and Windows 8 in same-cost 64-bit versions that provide advanced dependability, scalability, and performance. Like all migrations from 32-bit to 64-bit platforms, the upgrade can’t be done seamlessly. Every desktop PC and server requires a clean setup that entails reinstalling application software, saving and recovering data files, 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 8 will require you to perform a "from scratch" install. This being the case, there has never been a better time to upgrade to 64-bit computing on the desktop, since it will require scarcely any additional work.

How Progent Can Assist Your Business to Migrate to 64-bit Processing
Besides helping your organization to evaluate the business advantages, costs, and technical risks associated with upgrading to 64-bit computing, Progent's Microsoft-certified engineers can help you plan, document, carry out, 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 environment to verify that it supports all of the important 32-bit programs which you intend to retain as well as the new 64-bit editions of software you wish to install. If moving to Microsoft Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 is part of your 64-bit upgrade plan, Progent's certified Windows 7 engineers, Windows 8.1 consultants, and Windows 10 planning and migration consultants can assist you to determine which desktop computers and programs can or should be retained, and outline a migration procedure that is the least disruptive to your business operations.

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

  • Progent's expertise providing remote network support services can save you effort and expense over the course of your 64-bit upgrade, and Progent's background working with internal support staffs and providing technical knowledge sharing to them can improve the effectiveness of your support staff.

  • Progent's certified Cisco CCIE network engineers can make sure that your network architecture is optimized to accommodate your 64-bit computing environment, that it is easy to track, manage, and repair, and that it provides a high level of data protection and robustness.

  • Progent's disaster recovery consulting professionals can assist you in developing and validating a business continuity strategy that incorporates your 64-bit servers. Progent's Microsoft certified System Center System Center Data Protection Manager support experts can assist you to configure System Center SCDPM to provide automated remote backup with the advantage of rapid system recovery.

  • Progent's CISM, CISSP, and GIAC certified security specialists can help you develop a comprehensive security strategy that implements some of the new security mechanisms included with 64-bit server platforms. Progent can also provide network security vulnerability testing to assess or confirm your company's adherence to mandated security standards.

  • Progent's virtualization experts can help you benefit from 64-bit virtual server solutions to conserve hardware resources, streamline administration, improve dependability, cut colocation expenses, and reduce recovery time in the event of a catastrophic breakdown.

  • Progent's online education can help get your network support staff and your office workers up to speed rapidly and affordably by delivering interactive online webinars specialized for your computing requirements and business processes.
Contact Progent for Expertise in Migrating to 64-bit Processing
For more details about how Progent can assist you to migrate to x64 computing, call 1-800-993-9400 or refer to Contact Progent.