Overview of 64-bit Processing
The 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.
Advantages of Upgrading to 64-bit Processing
The benefits of 64-bit over 32-bit computing may appear to be vague and hard to quantify, yet they are real. The memory management techniques used in 32-bit systems are basically an engineering afterthought that limits system stability. Memory-hungry applications are sometimes unable to access free memory because the operating system cannot allocate it effectively. This can be the cause of software shutting down or performing fitfully even when a computer seems to have ample unused memory. Also, 64-bit operating systems allow much more addressable memory than 32-bit ones and crunch more data per clock cycle. You can also jump from one memory-hungry application to another more quickly when using a 64-bit system. Fundamentally, 64-bit processing makes systems more stable, more scalable, and faster, which makes companies more competitive.
Microsoft's 64-bit Processing Software
Microsoft's “x64” software works with the 64-bit processors found in virtually all computers now installed in office IT environments. (Microsoft's "Itanium" software is restricted to a few advanced Intel and AMD CPUs processors and is designed for environments that require large-scale multi-processing.) Prior to the release of Office 2010, most Microsoft client applications such as 2007 Office and Visual Studio 2005 were available only in 32-bit editions, which can nevertheless be used on x64 platforms. The latest generation of Microsoft Office 2010 offers significant enhancements. As an example, Microsoft Excel 2010 is available in a 64-bit version that allows you to build spreadsheets with huge datasets that are not limited to the 2-Gbyte maximum file size imposed by previous editions of Excel.
Microsoft offers native x64 versions of key Microsoft Server platforms, including Microsoft Windows Server 2008 and 2003, Microsoft SQL Server 2008, Exchange Server 2010 and 2007, Commerce Server, Microsoft BizTalk Server 2006, as well as Operations Manager. Microsoft Windows Server 64-bit editions are priced and licensed identically to their 32-bit editions, so ordinarily it costs nothing more for 64-bit server software or machines.
For desktop PCs, Microsoft supplies Windows 7 and Windows 8 in same-price 64-bit editions that offer advanced dependability, capacity, and performance. Like all upgrades from 32-bit to 64-bit platforms, the upgrade can’t be carried out without effort. Every workstation and server requires a clean installation that entails reinstalling applications, backing up and recovering data, and installing 64-bit drivers. On the other hand, for typical in-place desktop PCs, and for all PCs powered by Microsoft Windows XP, the 32 or 64-bit release of Windows 7 or 8 will require you to perform a "from scratch" installation. Consequently, there will never be a better opportunity to move to 64-bit computing on the desktop, since it will involve little additional work.
How Progent Can Assist Your Business to Migrate to 64-bit Computing
Besides helping you to understand the practical benefits, expenses, and technical variables attached to upgrading to 64-bit processing, Progent's Microsoft-certified consultants can help you plan, document, carry out, administer, and repair a network-wide move to 64-bit server and client operating systems and applications. Progent can help you test your 64-bit infrastructure to verify that it handles all of the key 32-bit applications which you want to retain as well as the new 64-bit versions of software you plan to run. If adopting Microsoft Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 is part of your x64 migration strategy, Progent's certified Windows 7 engineers, Windows 8.1 consultants, and Windows 10 planning and upgrade experts can assist you to decide which workstation hardware and applications can or ought to be preserved, and design a migration process that is minimally disruptive to your network operations.
Additional ways Progent can help your business to migrate to x64 processing include:
Contact Progent to Get Expertise in Upgrading to x64 Computing
- Progent's expertise delivering online computer consulting and troubleshooting can save your business effort and expense during your 64-bit migration, and Progent's background working with in-house support staffs and delivering technical knowledge sharing to them can improve the effectiveness of your support team.
- Progent's certified Cisco CCIE network engineers can verify that your network infrastructure is optimized to support your 64-bit processing environment, that it is simple to monitor, administer, and troubleshoot, and that it provides a high level of data protection and fault tolerance.
- Progent's business continuity consultants can assist you in creating and testing a business continuity plan that includes your x64 servers. Progent's Microsoft certified System Center SCDPM support professionals can help you to deploy Microsoft System Center SCDPM to support automated online backup with the capability of fast system restoration.
- Progent's CISM, CISSP, GIAC, and CISA network security consultants can help you create a comprehensive security plan that implements some of the new security technologies incorporated into 64-bit servers. Progent can also perform network security vulnerability checking to evaluate or validate your company's adherence to mandated security requirements.
- Progent's virtualization consultants can help you utilize 64-bit virtual server solutions to leverage your hardware, streamline administration, enhance reliability, lower hosting costs, and speed up restoration time in the event of a disaster.
- Progent's live online instruction can help get both your IT support team and your office workers up to speed quickly and cost-effectively by delivering online virtual training customized for your network requirements and operational procedures.
For additional details about how Progent's consultants can assist your business to migrate to x64 processing, call 1-800-993-9400 or refer to Contact Progent.