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Old 12-14-2006, 09:19 PM   #1
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32bit OS on a 64 machine?

Maybe it's just me and this is a stupid question (aren't they all) but...
I'm running an AMD 64 3200+ with 2G ram and 250G HD, Audigy Pro sound card and GeForce3 Video.
I've pawed through 4 or 5 solid distros so far, both 32 and 64 bit versions, and I've found the bulk of problems over all is the 64 bit versions of distros... One example is when I upgrade the Nvidia drivers, i've had to use the 32 bit versions, says there is no kernal available for 64bit....along with other weirdness.... so....

Would I really lose that much performance/power/utilization running a 32 bit version on my 64 bit machine?

It seems to scream along just fine either way, I just have less issues running 32 bit OS's.
Thanks in advance,
Old 12-14-2006, 09:31 PM   #2
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64-bit architectures are a bit of a mystery to me, but there aren't any performance setbacks to using 32-bit installs on a 64-bit system; you're just not using your system to the full potential, simply enough.
Old 12-14-2006, 10:07 PM   #3
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I haven't had a problem updating NVidia drivers. I did this on my AMD64 laptop recently by logging out of KDE, logging in as root; going to init level 3 and running "tiny-nvidia-installer --update.

Many of the packages that SuSE installs by default are the 32 bit versions. For example, firefox, so that it can run 32bit plugins like flash. The Open Office suite is only available in the 32 bit version.
Old 12-15-2006, 01:59 AM   #4
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as far as i can tell, it shouldn't matter. i get the feeling 64bit is one of those things that's not Awesome yet but will be Awesome in a few years once software catches up*

* on the desktop. on the server it's already very useful.

but, for example, i use an athlon64, with the 64bit version of Suse, mainly for Maya - which is still 32bit.

if you have the 64bit OS installed, 32bit apps and packages will still run perfectly fine (at least x86_64 - there's another 64bit architecture, the intel IA64 which is a whole other freakish thing, it might be dead by now).

if you install the kernel source, for the 64 bit kernel, compiling the nvidia driver should work fine just as it does for compiling against a 32bit kernel.
Old 12-15-2006, 08:39 PM   #5
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Thanks, ya'll.... I didn't think it would be that big of a deal myself really, so I went back last night and reinstalled the 32-bit version of SUSE 10.1 and gonna work on it more tonight after work. (I hate 2nd shift, it takes SO much valuable time away from my baby...)
I agree with you, skullmunky, maybe the 64 bit will catch up down the road and become a new standard in ... say 2 or 3 yrs?
Old 12-15-2006, 08:45 PM   #6
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I only use 32bit distros, even though my PC's will support 64bit distros. The 32bit just seem to work better.

Old 12-15-2006, 10:46 PM   #7
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64-bit programs only works the best when handling multimedia. While doing general tasks, you will lose or equal the performance when compared to 32-bit programs.

32-bit Linux distributions are more mature than 64-bit Linux distributions. I suggest browsing through and search for your favorite programs. Look for programs and libraries with out tilda (~) for ia64 and amd64. This will give an idea what you should expect with other distributions besides Gentoo.

For all nVidia software, I suggest do a force compile for your kernel version instead of using prebuilt versions. The real question is do you have a compiler, kernel headers, and library headers.


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