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Thread: 64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

  1. #1
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    64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

    I recently got fed up with windows freezing and taking ages to boot up so installed Ubuntu as a dual boot setup.

    After installing I realised I had installed the 32bit version.

    Are there any benefits to having the 64bit version if your computer has only 3GB RAM?

    I don't want to go through the hassle of replacing the 32bit version with the 64bit version if there are no benefits.
    Last edited by Malacath; March 10th, 2013 at 06:25 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: 64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

    Not much. Some programs will be faster using the 64 bit version. On the other hand, programs will use more memory. 3GB RAM is a bit of a grey area in the choice between 32 and 64 bit. But if you just installed it shouldn't be a lot of trouble to switch to 64 bit.

  3. #3
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    Re: 64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

    64 bit is the size of instructions that are passed to the cpu for performing tasks. It is not just about addressable memory, but also about operand and instruction size.

    The simplified version of this statement is that the execution of programs is supposed to be much faster on a 64 bit OS, provided the executing program does support 64 bit instruction set.

    In practical experience so far, the performance is 'usually' better, but not in everything.

    My personal advice is to try using both 32 bit and 64 bit on live cd (not installed vs. live), then decide yourself.
    Also, if it is not too much hassle, 64 bit is always recommended if you have even 1 GB of RAM.
    Varun
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  4. #4
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    Re: 64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

    In theory the 64bits version should be faster, but it's unnoticeable in most cases.

    There are some little disadvantages too, for example Wine still needs to install all the 32bits libraries to work properly.

    You can keep using the 32bits version and everything will work fine.

  5. #5
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    Re: 64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

    Thanks for the replies. I'll stick with 32bit. It seems to be working fine and am not having any problems.

    Is there an easy way to resize the partition Ubuntu uses?
    When installing I only gave it 80GB. It wasn't clear which partition was for windows and which was for ubuntu when I was installing so linux ended up with the smallest partition.

  6. #6
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    Re: 64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

    Better to start a new thread for each new question, but here is a quick answer: use gparted from a live cd. If you need to shrink the windows partition you can do that using the windows tool.

  7. #7
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    Re: 64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

    Quote Originally Posted by Malacath View Post
    Thanks for the replies. I'll stick with 32bit. It seems to be working fine and am not having any problems.

    Is there an easy way to resize the partition Ubuntu uses?
    When installing I only gave it 80GB. It wasn't clear which partition was for windows and which was for ubuntu when I was installing so linux ended up with the smallest partition.
    You can use Gparted (included on the live cd) to manipulate partitions.

    But be sure NOT to touch windows partition (or its boot partition) with gparted or any external tool. If required, defragment, then use windows' own disk management utility to shrink its partition(s).
    Then boot with the live cd > run gparted > expand the Ubuntu partition to fill the space.

    But also be aware that resizing ANY partition from it's 'Left' side will take eternity to complete (slightly exaggerated ). In that case, it is much-much quicker to just delete --> recreate the partition. If that happens to be Ubuntu's root partition, then you are looking for some complex operation that needs to be wisely performed.
    Varun
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  8. #8
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    Re: 64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

    Just use 32bit.. it is more safe..

  9. #9
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    Re: 64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

    Quote Originally Posted by ViliX64 View Post
    Just use 32bit.. it is more safe..
    Safe ??

    To be honest, I have never heard of, and can not think on a single reason why there would be a difference in 'safety' between the two versions.

    If you are concerned about compatibility of programs/drivers, it used to be a real concern some 6-7 years ago, not anymore. In Linux, absolutely not!

    But it's just my personal opinion, and I'm open for corrections
    Varun
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  10. #10
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    Re: 64bit Linux with only 3GB RAM

    Quote Originally Posted by varunendra View Post
    You can use Gparted (included on the live cd) to manipulate partitions.

    But be sure NOT to touch windows partition (or its boot partition) with gparted or any external tool. If required, defragment, then use windows' own disk management utility to shrink its partition(s).
    Then boot with the live cd > run gparted > expand the Ubuntu partition to fill the space.

    But also be aware that resizing ANY partition from it's 'Left' side will take eternity to complete (slightly exaggerated ). In that case, it is much-much quicker to just delete --> recreate the partition. If that happens to be Ubuntu's root partition, then you are looking for some complex operation that needs to be wisely performed.

    Thanks

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