Introduction to 64-bit Processing
With the availability of Microsoft Windows 7, the business case for migrating to 64-bit computing has never been better. Still, many IT managers are understandably hesitant to launch a significant upgrade task when the primary advantages — increased stability, capacity, and performance — are too vague to quantify precisely. Being a Microsoft Partner with years of background helping companies to implement network-wide migration projects, Progent can assist you to understand the risks and rewards of adopting 64-bit processing, design an efficient migration strategy that reduces operational interruptions, and provide cost-effective, high-level online technical support as you upgrade the system software powering your existing computers.
For the majority of office networks, 64-bit processing is a great unexploited power source. Both Intel and AMD, the leading CPU makers, have been delivering 64-bit ability in their commodity CPUs for years, so that all types of business computers including notebooks, desktop computers, high-powered workstations and advanced servers now have the ability to run in 64-bit format. Yet most of these computers still host 32-bit software platforms.
The primary reason for this widespread reluctance to participate in the 64-bit millennium is that the real benefit for upgrading existing systems has seemed to be modest in comparison to the effort required. There is no seamless path to migrate from a 32 to a 64-bit OS. The enhancement demands a clean install, which means reinstalling current applications, backing up and restoring data, and installing new drivers. This demands careful planning to carry out economically. Meanwhile, most office productivity software are still offered only in 32-bit editions, so where's the benefit?
Advantages of Upgrading to 64-bit Computing
The advantages of 64-bit vs. 32-bit processing may appear to be vague and hard to define precisely, but they are real. The RAM management schemes used in 32-bit systems are basically an engineering band-aid that limits system stability. RAM-starved programs are sometimes not able to utilize free memory because the O/S is unable to assign it effectively. This results in programs freezing or executing erratically even though a computer seems to have ample unused memory. In addition, 64-bit operating systems allow far more physical RAM than 32-bit ones and crunch more data per clock cycle. You can also go from one memory-hungry program to another faster while running in a 64-bit system. Fundamentally, 64-bit processing makes environments more stable, more expandable, and more efficient, which in turn makes businesses more competitive.
Microsoft's x64 Software
Microsoft's ďx64Ē technology works with the 64-bit processors used in most servers and desktop PCs now installed in business IT environments. (Microsoft's "Itanium" platform is limited to special high-end Intel/AMD CPUs and is designed for applications that need large-scale multi-processing.) Before the release of Office 2010, the majority of Microsoft desktop programs such as 2007 Office and Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 were available only in 32-bit editions, which can still be run on x64 platforms. The latest family of Microsoft Office offers significant enhancements. For example, Office Excel 2010 is available in a 64-bit version that permits you to build spreadsheets with enormous datasets that are not restricted to the 2-Gbyte file size that hampers previous versions of Excel.
Microsoft has developed native x64 editions of many Microsoft Server platforms, including Windows Server 2008, SQL Server 2008, Exchange Server 2010 and 2007, Microsoft Commerce Server 2007, Microsoft BizTalk Server, as well as Operations Manager. Windows Server x64 versions are priced and licensed the same as 32-bit editions, so in most circumstances it costs nothing extra for 64-bit server operating systems or machines.
For desktop PCs, Microsoft supplies Windows 7 and Windows 8 in same-price 64-bit editions that offer advanced stability, scalability, and performance. As with all migrations from 32-bit to 64-bit operating systems, the move up canít be carried out without effort. Every desktop PC and server requires a clean setup that entails reconfiguring applications, backing up and recovering data files, and configuring 64-bit drivers. In fact, for most current desktop PCs, and for all PCs powered by XP, the 32 or 64-bit version of Microsoft Windows 7 or Windows 8 requires you to perform a clean installation. This being the case, there will never be a better opportunity to move to 64-bit processing on the desktop, since it will require little extra effort.
How Progent Can Assist You to Upgrade to 64-bit Computing
Besides helping your organization to understand the business benefits, costs, and technical variables associated with migrating to 64-bit processing, Progent's Microsoft-certified consultants can help you plan, document, implement, administer, and repair a network-wide migration to 64-bit server and desktop OS software and business applications. Progent can help you pilot your 64-bit infrastructure to make sure it handles all of the key 32-bit applications which you want to retain as well as the latest 64-bit editions of applications you wish to run. If adopting Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 is included in your x64 migration strategy, Progent's certified Windows 7 engineers, Windows 8.1 migration consultants, and Windows 10 evaluation and migration consultants can help you to decide which workstation computers and programs can or ought to be preserved, and design an upgrade process that is minimally disruptive to your network productivity.
Additional ways Progent's consultants can help your business to upgrade to x64 computing include:
Contact Progent for Support for Upgrading to 64-bit Processing
- Progent's experience providing remote computer support services can save your business effort and expense during your 64-bit upgrade, and Progent's background cooperating with in-house IT staffs and delivering technical knowledge transfer to them can increase the efficiency of your network support team.
- Progent's certified Cisco CCIE network engineers can verify that your network architecture is configured to support your x64 processing solution, that it is simple to track, administer, and repair, and that it provides a high degree of security and dependability.
- Progent's business continuity consulting professionals can assist you in developing and validating a business continuity plan that includes your x64 servers. Progent's Microsoft certified Microsoft System Center SCDPM support professionals can assist you to configure Microsoft System Center SCDPM to support near-continuous remote backup with the advantage of rapid system recovery.
- Progent's CISM, CISSP, GIAC, and CISA network security specialists can assist you create a comprehensive security strategy that deploys some of the powerful security technologies incorporated into 64-bit servers. Progent can also perform security vulnerability checking to assess or validate your company's adherence to industry or government security requirements.
- Progent's virtualization engineers can show you how to benefit from 64-bit virtual server solutions to save money on hardware resources, streamline management, improve reliability, cut colocation and hosting expenses, and speed up restoration time in case of a catastrophic breakdown.
- Progent's online training classes can help bring both your network support staff and your desktop workers up to speed rapidly and affordably by providing online virtual training customized for your computing environment and business procedures.
For additional details about how Progent's engineers can help your business to migrate to x64 processing, call 1-800-993-9400 or see Contact Progent.