Overview of 64-bit Processing
Thanks to the release of Windows 7, the business case for upgrading to 64-bit processing has never seemed stronger. Still, most IT managers are understandably hesitant to take on a significant migration task when the primary advantages — improved dependability, scalability, and speed — are too vague to quantify with precision. Being a Microsoft Partner with years of background assisting businesses to implement network-wide migrations, Progent can assist your company to understand the risks and rewards of moving to 64-bit computing, create an economical upgrade scheme that reduces business disruptions, and provide cost-effective, high-level online consulting while you upgrade the software powering your current computers.
With the majority of office IT systems, 64-bit computing is a great unexploited power source. Intel and AMD, the top CPU chip makers, have been delivering 64-bit capability in their commodity CPUs for years, with the result that all types of business computers such as laptops, desktop computers, high-powered workstations and advanced servers already have the ability to run in 64-bit mode. Yet the majority of these devices still run 32-bit software platforms.
The main reason for this widespread reluctance to join the 64-bit revolution is that the real advantage for updating existing computers has appeared to be small in relation to the effort required. There is no seamless path to migrate from a 32 to a 64-bit operating system. The upgrade demands a clean install, which calls for reinstalling current programs, backing up and restoring data, and configuring new drivers. This demands thorough planning to carry out economically. Furthermore, most desktop applications are currently available only in 32-bit editions, so what's the benefit?
Advantages of Moving Up to 64-bit Computing
The benefits of 64-bit over 32-bit computing may appear to be subtle and difficult to define precisely, but they are real. The memory partitioning techniques used in 32-bit platforms are essentially an engineering afterthought that limits system stability. RAM-starved programs are often not able to utilize free memory since the operating system cannot assign it effectively. This results in software shutting down or executing fitfully even when a machine seems to have plenty of available RAM. In addition, 64-bit operating systems support far more physical RAM than 32-bit systems and process twice as much data per clock cycle. You can also switch from one memory-hungry application to another faster when you are using a 64-bit system. Basically, 64-bit computing makes systems more reliable, more expandable, and faster, which makes businesses more productive.
Microsoft's 64-bit Computing Initiative
Microsoft's ďx64Ē software works with the 64-bit processors found in virtually all computers currently deployed in office networks. (Microsoft's 64-bit "Itanium" initiative is limited to special advanced processors and is intended for environments that need massive multi-processing.) Before the availability of Microsoft Office 2010, most Microsoft desktop applications including Microsoft Office 2007 and Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 were available only in 32-bit editions, which can still be used on x64 Windows. The latest generation of Office offers significant improvements. For example, Excel 2010 is available in a 64-bit version that permits you to build spreadsheets with enormous datasets that are not restricted by the 2-Gbyte file size that hampers 32-bit editions of Microsoft Office Excel.
Microsoft has developed native x64 versions of key Microsoft Server platforms, including Microsoft Windows Server 2008 and 2003, Microsoft SQL Server 2008, Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 and 2007, Microsoft Commerce Server 2007, Microsoft BizTalk Server 2006, as well as Operations Manager. Windows Server 64-bit versions are priced and licensed the same as their 32-bit versions, so ordinarily it costs nothing extra for 64-bit server operating systems or hardware.
For desktop PCs, Microsoft supplies Windows 7 and Windows 8 in same-cost x64 versions that offer high stability, scalability, and performance. Like all upgrades from 32- to 64-bit operating systems, the upgrade canít be done without effort. Each workstation and server needs a clean installation that entails reinstalling applications, backing up and restoring data files, and configuring 64-bit drivers. In fact, for most in-place workstations, and for every PC running XP, the 32 or 64-bit edition of Windows 7 or Windows 8 will require you to carry out a "from scratch" installation. Consequently, there will never be a better time to upgrade to x64 computing on the desktop, since it will require little extra work.
How Progent Can Assist You to Migrate to 64-bit Computing
In addition to helping you to evaluate the business advantages, costs, and technical variables associated with upgrading to 64-bit processing, Progent's Microsoft-certified engineers can help you plan, document, carry out, administer, and repair a system-wide migration to 64-bit server and desktop OS software and applications. Progent can help you test your 64-bit environment to make sure it supports all of the key 32-bit applications which you intend to retain as well as the new 64-bit editions of applications you plan to run. If adopting Microsoft Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 is part of your x64 upgrade strategy, Progent's certified Windows 7 engineers, Windows 8.1 migration consultants, and Windows 10 testing and migration experts can assist you to determine which workstation hardware and applications can or should be preserved, and outline an upgrade process that is minimally disturbing to your business productivity.
Additional ways Progent can help your business to migrate to x64 computing include:
Contact Progent to Get Expertise in Migrating to x64 Processing
- Progent's experience providing remote computer consulting and troubleshooting can save your business effort and expense over the course of your x64 upgrade, and Progent's background working with internal support staffs and delivering technical knowledge sharing to them can improve the effectiveness of your network support staff.
- Progent's Cisco CCIE network consultants can verify that your network architecture is configured to support your 64-bit computing solution, that it is simple to monitor, administer, and troubleshoot, and that it offers a high degree of security and reliability.
- Progent's business continuity engineers can assist you in creating and testing a workplace recovery strategy that includes your 64-bit servers. Progent's Microsoft certified System Center System Center Data Protection Manager engineering experts can assist you to configure System Center SCDPM to provide near-continuous online backup with the capability of fast system recovery.
- Progent's CISM and CISA certified network security consultants can assist you develop a company-wide security plan that deploys some of the powerful security mechanisms included with x64 server platforms. Progent can also perform security vulnerability checking to assess or confirm your network's compliance with mandated security requirements.
- Progent's virtualization consultants can help you benefit from 64-bit virtual server technology to leverage your hardware, simplify management, improve robustness, cut colocation expenses, and reduce recovery time in case of a disaster.
- Progent's live online training classes can help bring your network management staff and your desktop employees up to speed rapidly and cost-effectively by providing remote webinars customized for your network requirements and operational procedures.
To learn more details about how Progent can assist your business to migrate to x64 processing, call 1-800-993-9400 or see Contact Progent.