Where are the x64 Apps?

Phillip2167 can't find any 64-bit programs for his new PC. He asked the Answer Line forum what programs are compatible.

You don't have to worry about x64 applications. The old, 32-bit x86 applications work just fine. They can't take full advantage of the 64-bit architecture, but they won't perform any worse than they will on a 32-bit x86 system. In fact, they may be faster if you have enough RAM--x64 systems don't suffer from x86's 4GB limitation.

It's a good thing you can run 32-bit applications in a 64-bit environment, because there are almost no native x64 applications. If you visit 64x Software, you will find very few applications.

But you will find a fair number of utilities, like anti-virus programs and diagnostic tools. These work closer to the operating system kernel than do applications, and sometimes to the hardware. If a program's purpose is to keep your PC safe, healthy, or secure, get something that supports x64, even if it's not an actual x64 program. It should say on the utility's published requirements.

I'd like to thank the Answer Line forum contributors, and especially SnyperTodd, for their contributions to this answer. You'll find the original discussion here.

Add your comments to this article below. If you have other tech questions, email them to me at answer@pcworld.com, or post them to a community of helpful folks on the PCW Answer Line forum.

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