What's New: Windows x64 Editions released

Microsoft has formally launched the 64-bit version of Windows XP (XP64), designed to run on AMD Athlon64 CPUs and Intel's CPUs with Athlon64-compatible EM64T (Extended Memory 64 Technology) - not Intel Itanium CPUs. Microsoft is also providing the software as a free exchange (plus shipping) for Windows XP Professional licenses. However, users should not rush out and upgrade just yet.

While CPU-intensive tasks such as 3D gaming and video rendering will see a boost from XP64, most lower-level 32-bit programs will not run on XP64, such as device drivers and antivirus utilities. 16-bit Windows and DOS programs will not run on it either. Microsoft's web site admits, "Unless you are pushing the boundaries of the 32-bit architecture, you will probably find that a 32-bit operating system is still the best option." Also, upgrading to a 64-bit version of Windows requires reformatting one's hard drive.

Look for more information on 64-bit versions of Windows in The ITS Connection.

Monday, May 2, 2005 11:39 am CDT

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