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Article ID: 827218 - Last Review: July 12, 2013 - Revision: 15.1

To continue receiving security updates for Windows, make sure that you're running Windows XP with Service Pack 3 (SP3). For more information, refer to this Microsoft webpage: Support is ending for some versions of Windows (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/help/end-support-windows-xp-sp2-windows-vista-without-service-packs)

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INTRODUCTION

This article automatically determines whether a computer is running a 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows. This article also describes how to manually determine whether a computer is running a 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows. Generally, a computer's bit count indicates how much data it can process, the speed with which it can process the data, and the maximum memory capacity. In order to optimize the computer's performance, the bit count of the operating system that is installed on the computer should match the bit count of the computer itself.

Automatic version detection results

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You are currently using a 32-bit operating system.
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You are currently using a 64-bit operating system.
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Manually determine which version of Windows is installed

Use the following methods to determine which version of Windows is installed, as appropriate for the operating system that you are running. 

Windows 8

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There are two methods that you can use to determine whether you are running a 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows 8. If one method does not work, try the other method. 

Method 1: View the System window in Control Panel

  1. Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and then tap Search. Or, if you are using a mouse, point to the lower-right corner of the screen, and then click Search.
  2. Type system in the search box, and then tap or click Settings.
  3. Tap or click System.
  4. If you are running a 64-bit version of Windows 8, 64-bit Operating System is displayed in the System type field under the System heading. If you are running a 32-bit version of Windows 8, 32-bit Operating System is displayed in the System type field under the System heading.

Method 2: View the System Information window

  1. Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and then tap Search. Or, if you are using a mouse, point to the lower-right corner of the screen, and then click Search.
  2. In the search box, type system information.
  3. Tap or click System, tap or click System Information, and then click System Summary.
  4. If you are running a 64-bit version of Windows 8, x64-based PC is displayed in the System type field under the Item heading.
    If you are running a 32-bit version of Windows 8, x86-based PC is displayed in the System type field under the Item heading.  
If you cannot determine whether the computer is running a 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows 8 by using these methods, go to the "Next Steps" section.
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Windows Vista or Windows 7

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If you have Windows Vista or Windows 7, there are two methods to determine whether you are running a 32-bit version or a 64-bit version. If one method does not work, try the other method.

Method 1: View the System window in Control Panel

  1. Click Start
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     Start button
    , type system in the Start Search box, and then click system in the Programs list.
  2. The operating system is displayed as follows:
    • For a 64-bit version operating system, 64-bit Operating System appears for the System type under System.
    • For a 32-bit version operating system, 32-bit Operating System appears for the System type under System.

Method 2: View the System Information window

  1. Click Start
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     Start button
    , type system in the Start Search box, and then click System Information in the Programs list.
  2. When System Summary is selected in the navigation pane, the operating system is displayed as follows:
    • For a 64-bit version operating system, x64-based PC appears for the System type under Item.
    • For a 32-bit version operating system, x86-based PC appears for the System type under Item.
If you cannot determine the operating system bit count by using these methods, go to the "Next Steps" section.


Video: How to determine whether you are running a 32-bit or a 64-bit edition of Windows

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uuid=f4bdcc15-c0f6-4f72-9bc4-ab031ec43612 VideoUrl=http://aka.ms/ie1bsc (http://aka.ms/ie1bsc)
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Windows XP

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If you have Windows XP, there are two methods to determine whether you are running a 32-bit version or a 64-bit version. If one method does not work, try the other method.  

Method 1: View the System window in Control Panel

  1. Click Start, and then click Run.
  2. Type sysdm.cpl, and then click OK.
  3. Click the General tab. The operating system is displayed as follows:
    • For a 64-bit version operating system, Windows XP Professional x64 Edition Version < Year> appears under System.
    • For a 32-bit version operating system, Windows XP Professional Version <Year> appears under System.
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    Note <Year> is a placeholder for a year.

Method 2: View the System Information window

  1. Click Start, and then click Run.
  2. Type winmsd.exe, and then click OK.
  3. When System Summary is selected in the navigation pane, locate Processor under Item in the details pane. Note the value.
    • If the value that corresponds to Processor starts with x86, the computer is running a 32-bit version of Windows.
    • If the value that corresponds to Processor starts with IA-64 or AMD64, the computer is running a 64-bit version of Windows.
If you cannot determine the operating system bit count by using these methods, go to the "Next Steps" section.
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Windows Server 2003

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If you have Windows Server 2003, there are two methods to determine whether you are running a 32-bit version or a 64-bit version. If one method does not work, try the other method.

Method 1: View System Properties in Control Panel

  1. Click Start, and then click Run.
  2. Type sysdm.cpl, and then click OK.
  3. Click the General tab. The operating system is displayed as follows:
    • For a 64-bit version operating system, Windows Server 2003 Enterprise x64 Edition appears under System.
    • For a 32-bit version operating system, Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition appears under System.

Method 2: View the System Information window

  1. Click Start, and then click Run.
  2. Type winmsd.exe, and then click OK.
  3. When System Summary is selected in the navigation pane, locate Processor under Item in the details pane. Note the value.
    • If the value that corresponds to Processor starts with x86, the computer is running a 32-bit version of Windows.
    • If the value that corresponds to Processor starts with EM64T or IA-64, the computer is running a 64-bit version of Windows.
If you cannot determine the operating system bit count by using these methods, go to the "Next Steps" section.
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Notes
  • To find the computer’s bit count, see the documentation that was included with the computer or contact the hardware manufacturer.
  • Intel Itanium-based computers can run only 64-bit versions of Windows. Intel Itanium-based computers cannot run 32-bit versions of Windows. Currently, 64-bit versions of Windows run only on Itanium-based computers and on AMD64-based computers.

NEXT STEPS

If you cannot use these methods to determine the operating system bit count, unfortunately this article can't help you any further. As a next step, you might want to ask someone that you know for help, or you might want to contact Support. For information about how to contact Support, go to the Microsoft Support (http://support.microsoft.com/contactus) website.


The third-party products that this article discusses are manufactured by companies that are independent of Microsoft. Microsoft makes no warranty, implied or otherwise, about the performance or reliability of these products.

Applies to
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional
  • Microsoft Windows XP Tablet PC Edition
  • Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 Update Rollup 2
  • Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
  • Windows Vista Enterprise 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Basic 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Business
  • Windows Vista Business 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Enterprise
  • Windows Vista Home Basic
  • Windows Vista Home Premium Beta
  • Windows Vista Ultimate Beta
  • Windows Vista Starter
  • Windows Vista Ultimate
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise x64 Edition
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition (32-bit x86)
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition for Itanium-Based Systems
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Datacenter x64 Edition
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition (32-bit x86)
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition for Itanium-based Systems
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition (32-bit x86)
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Standard x64 Edition
  • Windows 7 Enterprise
  • Windows 7 Enterprise E
  • Windows 7 Enterprise N
  • Windows 7 Home Basic
  • Windows 7 Home Premium
  • Windows 7 Home Premium E
  • Windows 7 Home Premium N
  • Windows 7 Professional
  • Windows 7 Professional E
  • Windows 7 Professional N
  • Windows 7 Ultimate
  • Windows 7 Ultimate E
  • Windows 7 Ultimate N
  • Windows 8
  • Windows 8 Enterprise
  • Windows 8 Pro
Keywords: 
kbexpertiseadvanced kbexpertiseinter kbinfo kbhowtomaster kbmsifixme kbfixme kbvideocontent kbcip KB827218
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