Overview of 64-bit Computing
Thanks to the release of Microsoft Windows 7, the business justification for upgrading to 64-bit processing has never seemed stronger. Still, many network managers are predictably reluctant to take on a major migration task when the primary advantages — improved dependability, scalability, and speed — are too intangible to evaluate precisely. Being a Microsoft Partner with over 20 years of experience assisting businesses to implement system-wide migration projects, Progent can assist you to assess the risks and rewards of adopting 64-bit processing, create an economical migration scheme that reduces business disruptions, and provide affordable, high-level remote support as you update the software powering your existing computers.
With most office networks, 64-bit computing is a great unexploited resource. Intel and AMD, the leading CPU chip manufacturers, have been incorporating 64-bit ability in their commodity processors for years, so that all types of business computing hardware such as laptops, desktop PCs, high-powered workstations and back-office servers already have the architecture to run in 64-bit format. However most of these in-place computers still host 32-bit software platforms.
The primary reason for this widespread reluctance to join the 64-bit revolution is that the real advantage for upgrading existing computers has seemed to be modest in relation to the work required. There is no seamless process to upgrade from a 32 to a 64-bit operating system. The upgrade demands a clean install, which calls for reinstalling existing programs, saving and recovering data, and configuring new 64-bit drivers. This requires careful planning to do efficiently. Meanwhile, many popular office applications are still available only in 32-bit versions, so where's the benefit?
Advantages of Upgrading to 64-bit Computing
The benefits of 64-bit over 32-bit computing may appear to be subtle and hard to quantify, yet they are real. The memory allocation techniques used in 32-bit platforms are basically a technical band-aid that undermines system stability. RAM-hungry programs are sometimes not able to utilize available memory because the O/S is unable to assign it efficiently. This results in software shutting down or executing fitfully even though a machine seems to have plenty of available RAM. In addition, 64-bit operating systems allow far more addressable RAM than 32-bit systems and crunch twice as much data per clock cycle. You can also jump from one memory-hungry application to another more quickly when you are using a 64-bit system. Basically, 64-bit processing makes environments more stable, more expandable, and faster, which in turn makes companies more competitive.
Microsoft's 64-bit Computing Support
Microsoft's “x64” software works with the 64-bit CPUs used in virtually all computers currently deployed in business networks. (Microsoft's 64-bit "Itanium" platform is restricted to special advanced Intel/AMD CPUs and is designed for environments that require massive multi-processing.) Before the release of Office 2010, most Microsoft desktop applications including Microsoft Office 2007 and Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 were available solely in 32-bit editions, which can still be used on x64 Windows. The latest family of Microsoft Office delivers dramatic enhancements. As an example, Office Excel 2010 is offered in a 64-bit version that permits you to build spreadsheets with huge databases that are not restricted to the 2-gigabyte maximum file size that hampers 32-bit editions of Microsoft Office Excel.
Microsoft has developed true x64 versions of key Microsoft Server platforms, including Windows Server 2008, SQL Server 2008, Exchange Server 2010 and 2007, Commerce Server, Microsoft BizTalk Server, as well as Operations Manager. Microsoft Windows Server 64-bit versions are priced and licensed the same as 32-bit counterparts, so typically it costs nothing more for 64-bit server software or hardware.
For desktop PCs, Microsoft supplies Windows 7 and Windows 8 in same-price x64 versions that offer advanced dependability, capacity, and throughput. As with all migrations from 32- to 64-bit platforms, the upgrade can't be carried out seamlessly. Every workstation and server needs a clean setup that involves reinstalling application software, backing up and recovering data files, and installing 64-bit drivers. In fact, for typical current workstations, and for all PCs powered by Microsoft Windows XP, the 32 or 64-bit release of Windows 7 or 8 requires you to carry out a clean installation. This being the case, there has never been a better time to migrate to 64-bit computing on the desktop, since it will require scarcely any extra effort.
How Progent Can Help Your Business to Upgrade to 64-bit Processing
Besides helping your organization to evaluate the practical benefits, expenses, and technical variables associated with migrating to 64-bit computing, Progent's Microsoft-certified consultants can help you design, document, implement, administer, and repair a network-wide move to 64-bit server and desktop operating systems and applications. Progent can help you pilot your 64-bit infrastructure to verify that it handles all of the key 32-bit applications which you want to retain plus the new 64-bit editions of applications you plan to run. If adopting Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 is included in your x64 upgrade strategy, Progent's certified Windows 7 engineers, Windows 8.1 migration consultants, and Windows 10 testing and upgrade experts can assist your company to decide which workstation hardware and programs can or ought to be retained, and plan a migration process that is the least disruptive to your business operations.
Additional ways Progent can assist you to migrate to x64 processing include:
Contact Progent for Help Migrating to x64 Computing
- Progent's experience providing online computer consulting and support can save your business time and money over the course of your 64-bit migration, and Progent's background working with in-house IT staffs and providing technical information transfer to them can improve the effectiveness of your network support staff.
- Progent's certified Cisco CCIE network consultants can make sure that your network infrastructure is configured to accommodate your x64 processing environment, that it is simple to monitor, manage, and repair, and that it offers a high level of data protection and robustness.
- Progent's disaster recovery consultants can assist you in creating and validating a business continuity strategy that includes your 64-bit servers. Progent's Microsoft certified Microsoft System Center System Center Data Protection Manager support experts can help you to configure System Center System Center Data Protection Manager to provide near-continuous remote backup with the capability of rapid system restoration.
- Progent's CISSP and GIAC network security experts can assist you develop a comprehensive security strategy that implements some of the new protection mechanisms included with x64 server platforms. Progent can also provide security vulnerability testing to evaluate or verify your network's adherence to industry or government security standards.
- Progent's virtualization experts can show you how to benefit from 64-bit virtual server technology to leverage your equipment, streamline management, improve reliability, cut colocation expenses, and reduce recovery time in case of a disaster.
- Progent's live online training classes can help bring your network support team and your desktop workers up to date rapidly and affordably by delivering remote virtual training customized for your computing environment and operational processes.
To find out additional details about how Progent can help you to upgrade to 64-bit computing, call 1-800-993-9400 or go to Contact Progent.