Am I Running A 32-bit or 64-bit Version of Windows XP?

July 18, 2012 · 4 comments

in IT & Tech

Am I Running A 32-bit or 64-bit Version of Windows XP?

Is it 32 or 64 bit 
Win XP?

One of the pesky things we sometimes encounter when installing patches or add-ons for Windows is needing to know if our version of Windows XP is either 32 or 64 bit!

(Click here, if you’re looking for which version of Win 7 you’re running.)

This can be maddening if you don’t know where to find this little snippet of information. 

Fortunately, it’s easy to locate in the “System Properties” panel. 

You can access the System Properties either from the “System” icon in the Control Panel – or – by clicking on Start, right-clicking on My Computer, and then clicking on “properties” in the drop-down menu. 

 Screenshot showing the version information for windows xp

Windows XP is a little vague with how they reveal this information. 

If you see: 

    • Microsoft Windows XP Professional Version [year] it means you’re running Windows XP 32-bit.
    • Microsoft Windows XP Professional x64 Edition Version [year] it means you’re running Windows XP 64-bit.

This lets you easily and quickly know whether you need a 32bit or  64-bit version of the addon/patch/program that you are intending to install. 

(Many 32 bit applications will run on a 64 bit system but that is not always true and in the case of patches you must use the right one.)

Hope this helps!

~ Kim ~
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image source:  Screenshots by me, Windows is a trademark of Microsoft

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Thomas July 21, 2012 at 11:52 am

Hi Kim
One of the biggest issues in my opinion with 32 bit Vs. 64 bit is driver support. As you also say almost any 32 bit application can run on a 64 bit Windows and most applications available in 64 bit are also available in 32 bit. The big issue when you are switching to 64 bit Windows is of there are 64 bit driver support for all you devices (e.g. printers, scanners and sound cards). Another issue is that old 16 bit program can’t run in 64 bit Windows, but not many people have those anymore.
It will all be much easier in a couple of years, when everything are running 64 bit.

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Kim Castleberry July 21, 2012 at 2:16 pm

Thomas, on many of those points, I agree. However, I will say that I lost most of my hardware losses when I moved to Vista and my step up to Windows 7 32 and then Windows 7 64 actually didn’t cost me any hardware. I have a few apps that do have to be run in compatibility mode but that’s an age issue not a 64bit issue (they want to be run as XP) Now that Vista has been out… ummm… maybe 6years? I think the average user is getting to the point where most of their hardware is reasonably new. Of course, I remember my transition from Win98 to XP where I lost most of my hardware including my expensive scanner and I was both frustrated and kinda heartbroke. It can be hard if your affected!
Kim

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Thomas July 21, 2012 at 2:34 pm

It is never easy to say goodbye to the hardware we have used for years and paid a lot of money for, just because the manufacture did not made a driver available for it to a new operating system. Funny you mention Win98. It is not more than I month ago I had to install a Windows 98 machine for a local production company, because it was controlling a very expensive machine via some old software using serial communication. I had a couple of good laugh with that installation e.g. “The disk is larger than 512 MB, do you want to enable large disk support?” or how about “It is now safe for you to turn off your computer” :-D

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chanikacha August 24, 2012 at 12:19 am

Over the years that I had a computer I never yet tried installing window xp because when I got my first computer I had a windows vista os installed on it. Anyways Thanks for this information Kim!

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