Microsoft Exploring Windows 8 Exclusively 64-Bit Scenario

Discussion in 'Windows 7' started by RACERPRO, Nov 26, 2008.


    RACERPRO MDL Senior Member

    Feb 13, 2008
    Microsoft is exploring the possibility of delivering Windows 8 exclusively for 64-bit. As far as the next iteration of Windows is concerned, the Redmond company already confirmed that Windows 7 would come in both x86 and x64 flavors.

    While no word is still out on whether Windows 8 will feature both 32-bit and 64-bit versions, indications are pointing to a scenario where the software giant would abandon the x86 version of the operating system in favor of the x64 one.

    In mid-August 2008, Christopher Flores, director Windows Communications, revealed that, driven by the increasing prevalence of 64-bit CPU architectures, 64-bit Windows managed to break into the mainstream. At that time, Microsoft was detecting what the company referred to as a dramatic increase in the volume of 64-bit machines connecting to Windows Update. The explanation offered by Microsoft for the explosion in the adoption of 64-bit Windows involved the shift of Original Equipment Manufacturers to 64-bit machines, which could take advantage of over 4 GB of RAM, as system memory prices dropped.

    Microsoft is now testing the waters to get a feel of just how much application developers are keeping up the pace with the hardware evolution. In this context, the Redmond giant is asking for the developers' feedback via a survey designed to assess "How should 64- and 32-bit apps work on future Operating Systems?” according to Karin Meier, Microsoft program manager, but which clearly states on the starting page that “the purpose of this survey is to ask about your needs in developing 64bit software.”

    "The Windows engineering teams are planning how 64-bit and 32-bit applications will work in future versions of the operating system, as 64-bit PCs become increasingly prevalent. They have created a survey that will enable customers to tell Microsoft what they feel the needs and priorities are for improvements in how 64-bit and 32-bit applications should function. They would really like to have your feedback, so if you’re interested, consider filling out the survey. It contains 12 questions, and will take about 10 minutes to complete," Meier said.

    Via the survey Microsoft asks about the “degree of 64-bit support does the primary application you work on have today? [With the following alternatives for answers:] we ship a native 64bit version; we verify a 32bit version works well on 64bit operating systems; our application is 32bit only and will NOT run on 64bit operating systems; our application is 32bit and 64bit agnostic, and doesn't require special versions for 32bit or 64bit operating systems; our application is mostly 32bit with some 64bit components; and don't know.”

    However, more importantly, Microsoft is inquiring about what developers are planning to do about 64-bit support with their applications in the future. In this regard, the company is interested in a timetable, just 2 years following the reported release of Windows 7. “What degree of 64-bit support do you want the primary application you work on to have by 2011?” the company asks.(emphasis added)

    When it comes down to 64-bit application support by 2011, developers can choose from these answers: “ship a native 64bit version; ship both a native 32bit AND a 64bit version; verify a 32bit version works well on 64bit operating systems; application will remain 32bit only and will NOT run on 64bit operating systems; our application is 32bit and 64bit agnostic, and doesn't require special versions for 32bit or 64bit operating systems; our application will be mostly 32bit with some 64bit components; and don't know.”

    In all fairness, there is no mentioning of Windows 8 in the survey. However, 2011 automatically points to the successor of Windows 7. In the context in which Windows 7 would be shipped by the end of 2009, Microsoft could deliver Windows 8, in a two to three year timeframe, namely 2011, 2012. With the hardware manufacturers and OEMs already showing strong support for 64-bit, Microsoft needs only the majority of software developers to tailor their applications for x64, in order to produce an exclusively 64-bit Windows 8.

    Moreover, while Windows 7 client might be delivered both as 32-bit and 64-bit, the fact is that Windows 7 Server will only be 64-bit. Microsoft confirmed that Windows Server 2008 would be the last Windows Server operating system with 32-bit support. As 64-bit architectures become mainstream, the same strategy could be applied to the Windows client, starting with Windows 8.

  2. LUg

    LUg MDL Junior Member

    Nov 9, 2008
    Hopefully this is not the case as millions would be missing out on what promises to be the finest Windows release yet. Would Microsoft really stoop so low forcing people to carry on using what will become inferior Vista.

  3. HSChronic

    HSChronic MDL Expert

    Aug 25, 2007
    Windows 8 will be 64-bit only, it is only logical. x86 only processors are not even sold anymore, so why develop an OS that caters to x86 when all your future server versions will be x64 only.

    Windows 7 will be x86 and x64 but that will be that last one. Microsoft doesn't care about the consumer, their money comes from OEMs and Enterprises. Whatever MS tells the OEMs and SA customers they have to bend over and take, you will see more "rumors" (if you can call them that, they are more like hints, saying that 'Hey the next Windows Client OS after 7 will be 64 bit only'), on this matter as MS gears up to start on Windows 8 development in a year or 2.
  4. Gyrxiur

    Gyrxiur MDL Junior Member

    Feb 7, 2008
    This is good, I think that 7 could be only x64 too. When we will have only x64 OS, we could get x64 flash player, x64 firefox, all with better speeds thanks to x64 architecture. x86 is really old and RAM 4 GB or more are going to be standard.
  5. bchat

    bchat MDL Smart Azz

    Nov 7, 2008
    Vista is both, 7 should be both, and M/S should announce ASAP that 8 will be 64 only and target date. This gives everybody a few years to get ready for the 64 bit only OS.

    Then there will be no reason for issues to arise when 8 comes out. This would mirror the way the Government is announcing the change to all digital TV next year - plenty of warning.
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  6. PrEzi

    PrEzi MDL Addicted

    Aug 23, 2007
    At last... 32bit is so damn behind now.
    They can shift the resources from developing both 32 and 64 to 64 only and make it better.
    But it will start the flames about (in) compatibility - I'm nearly sure of it...
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  7. LUg

    LUg MDL Junior Member

    Nov 9, 2008
    I misread your post thank goodness. I glanced at it quickly and thought it said Windows 7

    On another point those stating that everything should be 64bit, perhaps they should consider purchasing everyone a 64bit PC/Laptop first. Many, Many people like myself work with 32bit and are more than satisfied. So before making such bold statements for goodness sake think of others.

  8. xStevenx

    xStevenx MDL Novice

    Nov 19, 2007
    I can't wait! I think they really should have done it with win 7 to get people out of the xp stone age.
  9. kaninelupus

    kaninelupus MDL Novice

    Jun 27, 2009
    missing facts

    Let me see.... x64 architecture runs far lighter, is far more stable, offers far greater file integrity and security

    At the moment x64 specific software is rather average. Why?? Because currently software developers have the option of living in the ordinary. You go on about not speaking for everyone and being perfectly happy, but look at a perfect example of what happen when MS made another bold move, Pre-Vista your average video card cost a small fortune, as it only catered to a small user group. A few yrs on, and high-end GPUs cost a fraction of what they used to and much more effort is being invested in future development. The same is perfectly possible in x64 sopftware development.

    In the case of Win7, I think MS should really taken a two-step approach. Releasing Win7 retail in x86 would allow the user on an older PC to adopt the latest OS build, while limiting the OEM releases to x64 would effectively put an end to the outdate 32 bit architecture. So long as OEM vendors have access to x86 platforms it is actually bad for evryone. For example, while the x64 browser is now easilly available, with all the security advantages offered, because Adobe has the option, we are still waiting for a x64 build of Flash Player which so many sites require.

    Hardware and software devs have had access to Windows x64 platfroms for a number of yrs now, but whilst the option is being given, those of us who have made the move to x64 Windows are still hitting brick walls. In order to give x64 u.sers unproblematic DivX support on x64, MS had to build it in natively due to DivX's lacklustre support. Your talking about not speakig for others, but you sound like you would happilly see the many of us making sthe move to x64 hamstrung for MS not forcing the issue!!

    Bought an ASUS gaming notebook a little over a year ago. Althought it supported x64, it came with Vist x86 installed (I guess becased was slightly cheaper). Have recently installed Win7 64, and in all honesty much of my hardware performs better than on either XP or Vista.

    I can see the sense in Win8 going x64 only being logical. If we track the progress in both PC and notebook offerings, you can see that current builds are now commonly hitting the RAM limits possible (4 GB). In order to offer higher, they need to move to x64. Forcing the x64 transition is better for everyone... it provides a lighter and more stable environ for everyone, and brings the cost down for all concerned. Software devs will be forced to offer 64 applications, and hardware creators forced to get their act together... better for everyone.
  10. Smed1065

    Smed1065 MDL Novice

    Jun 27, 2009
    Why do people hold on to yesterday? Easy too?

    I mean 64 is the future and hopes it does come to this...

    I am a n00b but I can it from there...

  11. juzz

    juzz MDL Member

    Jun 28, 2008
  12. bchat

    bchat MDL Smart Azz

    Nov 7, 2008
    I can live with this.:)
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  13. tomorrow

    tomorrow MDL Addicted

    Jul 3, 2008
    Actually 64bit has few disadvantages compared to 32bit(albeit small):
    *3D performance is 5-10% lower generally compared to 32bit.64bit games really dont have currently any optimizations that would make them faster(altough that will happen eventually).So on a best case scenario you get the same performance.Tests show that if you game on 32 bit with 3GB RAM you need 6GB RAM on 64bit to achieve the same performance.
    *64bit size is bigger.You notice it everywhere.It takes more HDD space and eats more memory compared to 32bit
    *All drivers need to be signed.No more using outdated 32bit drivers to power certain hardware(printers are good example).There is a way to get around this(Search ReadyDriver Plus from google)

    Those that say that x86 is outdated are sadly mistaken.x86 OS-s are as modern as x64.The end-user does not spot any difference.Just highlighting some other aspects so dont beat me down.Ill be moving to x64 too(Vista Ultimate SP2 will be my last 32bit os).
  14. reb0rn

    reb0rn MDL Junior Member

    Mar 11, 2008

    totaly agree, only problem is that ram is cheap and many ppl wants more then 4GB, me included :)
    also i would like to see some benefit of x64 coding if possible
  15. tomorrow

    tomorrow MDL Addicted

    Jul 3, 2008
    #15 tomorrow, Jun 28, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017
    Yep.Both RAM and HDD-s are pretty cheap these days.I currently still have 2GB RAM so i know there will be performance penalty when making the transition,but i do it so would not have to do in future when i finally upgrade my hardware.When i upgrade then OS will already be ready to support it.Also x64 software development seems to have picked up too.Im seeing more and more software that is either made x64 compative or even provided native x64 versions.

    Since i`ll be making the transition i have been researching quite a bit and here is what i found.This is pretty much all the software i use(excluding drivers and number of portable apps).
    *If nothing is marked it means i couldnt find solid info if this program supports x64
    *If x64* is marked then it mean same version that works on x86 should work on x64 too.
    *If x64 is marked then the program has native x64 version too

    Here you go:
      3DMark01 v.3.30
      3DMark03 Hotfix June 2009
      3DMark03 v.3.60
      3DMark05 Hotfix June 2009
      3DMark05 v.1.30
      3DMark06 Hotfix June 2009
      3DMark06 v.1.10
      3DMark Hotfix February 2008
      3DMark Hotfix October 2007
      3DMark Vantage Hotfix June 2009
      3DMark Vantage v.1.01
      Adobe Flash Player v. 
      Adobe Flash Player v.                                                  
      Adobe Shockwave     
      Advanced Shortcuts Composer v.6.9.1
      AMD Dual-Core Optimizer
      A-Patch v.                                                     
    x64* ATITool v.0.27 Beta 4
      AutoGK v.2.55 STABLE
    x64* CCleaner v.2.20.920
    x64* CryEngine2 Sandbox2
      Crysis Warhead Deauthorization Tool
      Crysis Warhead Framebuffer Benchmark v.0.32
    x64  Daemon Tools Lite v.
      DigiDoc v.2.6.11
    x64   Diskeeper 2009 Pro Premier v.13.0.385
    x64* Driver Sweeper v.2.0.0 BETA2                                                    
    x64* Everest v.4.20.1316 Beta
    x64* Everest v.4.60.1500
    x64* EVGA SLI Fix
    x64* Explorer Suite
    x64* F@H GPU
      FahMon v.
    x64  Firefox v.3.0.10
    x64  Firefox v.3.5 BETA 4
      Firefox WGA Plugin
    x64  Firefox WMP Plugin
      Flickr Uploader v.3.2
      Foxit Reader v.3.1506
    x64* Fraps v.2.9.8
      Gmail Notifier Plus v.1.2
    x64* Half-Open Limit Fix v.4.1
    x64  HashTab v.2.3.0
      HDTach v.3.4 MODDED
      HDTach v.3.4
      ID Kaart v.
      ID Kaart v.1.4.92(IE)
    x64* Imgburn v.
      Infranview v.4.22 Plugins
      Infranview v.4.23
    x64  ISO Recorder
    x64* Java 6 Update 14
      Kantaris v.0.4.3
      Karens Replicator
    x64  K-Lite Codec Pack v.4.85
      Logitech GamePanel v.3.01
    x64  Logitech Setpoint v.4.72
      LogonStudio Vista
    x64* Marvell Network Conf Utility
    x64  NOD 32 v.4.0.314
    x64* Nokia PC Suite v.
      Nokia SW Updater v.
    x64  Nvidia NF 15.17 32bit
    x64* Nvidia PhysX v.9.09.0428
      OCCT v.3.1.0
      Open Arguments v.1.2
    x64* OpenAL v.
      Rename File Extensions v.1.0
    x64* RivaTuner v.2.24
      SendToToys v.2.5
      Shell Tools v.1.1
    x64  ShellExView v.1.2.1
    x64  SidebarStyler
      Skype v.
      Smartmovie Converter
    x64* SpeedFan v.4.38
      Spybot Search & Destroy v.
      UniExtract v.1.6 Beta
      Unlocker v.1.87
      Utorrent v.1.8.2
    x64  WAIK 6001
    x64  WAIK 7100
    x64  Ventrilo v.3.0.5
    x64  Windows 7 LIP Integrator
      Windows Live Installer v.14.0.8064.206
    x64  WinRAR v.3.80
      Virtual PC 2007 SP1
    x64* VirtualBox v.2.2.2
    x64   VirtualDub v.1.9.2
    x64* Vista Shortcut Manager v.2.0
    x64* VistaBootPRO v.3.3.0
      Vize v.1.1 BETA
    x64* vLite v.1.1.6 BETA
    x64* vLite v.1.2 Final
      VobSub v.2.23
      XRecode v.2.54
      Youtube Downloader v.
      YouTube To Mp3 Converter v.
      YouTube Uploader v.
    Note that not all programs are the latest version
  16. footgay

    footgay MDL Member

    Jun 28, 2009
    I think that's the point of having 64bit native systems.
    Everything will be 64bit optimized because it needs to, and I doubt 32bit-optimized games will perform better than 64bit-optimized games.
    64bit size is another story, but I again doubt that it can't be optimized. I mean often 64bit programs are just 32bit program with registering of 64bit memory, that mean increased size for libraries and executable. If they're optimized to 64bit, of course the size may still be slightly larger, but not as much as it is now.
  17. Dutchman01

    Dutchman01 MDL Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    I agree with only 64-bit windows 8.

    Why the systems you get today has already support for 64-bit.

    now its the turn to all the software.

    32-bits is old.
  18. Belarathon

    Belarathon MDL Senior Member

    Nov 21, 2007
    Yeah I'm game for all x64. I remember when the talk was that Vista would only be available in 64 bit. Hope it's for real this time.
  19. PrEzi

    PrEzi MDL Addicted

    Aug 23, 2007
    I would love to see a native 64-bit only OS from microsoft for a broaded architecture (not the Itanium 64-bit architecture that was a big dissapointment).
    Hopefully then the developers will start optimizing the software for 64-bit usage.
    Oh, and one more thing - the overhead when running 32-bit aplications in the 64-bit environment isn't so big (like tommorow wrote). It really depends on the 64-bit drivers quality and optimisations.
    From some benchmarks I have concluded that the overhead is sometimes smaller, sometimes bigger, but max 5% on average.
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  20. unwanted

    unwanted MDL Junior Member

    May 4, 2008
    Oh come on give me a break...