View Full Version : [ubuntu] x32 vs x64 on netbook

October 13th, 2011, 11:31 AM
Hi folks, just about to upgrade my eeepc 901 to an eeepc 1015px. My 901 has been my portable office for the last couple years, and I've loved it. Specs have been a fast runcore ssd drive, 2gb of ram, and an n270 processor.

The eeepc 1015px will have (when I've done modding it, at any rate) 2gb of ram, a very fast 128 gb ssd drive, and an n570 dual-core processor clocked at 1.66 ghz.

The n570 processor can run a x64 bit system, as well of course as a x32 bit one. Any thoughts of what I should choose? I know there are some advantages with a x64 bit system, however am not sure what difference I'll see on an atom chip, particularly one that only support 2 gig of ram...

Mostly I'll be using this machine like I use my eeepc 901. I'll be running libreoffice, surfing the web, emailing, and running gimp & scribus; usually all at once. What are the advantages of running a x64 bit system, with the above specs, over a x32 bit one, and vice versa?

Lastly, this new machine is 'ubuntu certified'... whatever that currently means. The certification however is for the x32 bit architecture on ubuntu 11.04, not the x64 bit, even though it supports this. I'll be installing Ubuntu 11.10 on it when it arrives. Thanks for your feedback!


October 13th, 2011, 11:45 AM
I think that you should continue to run 32-bit Ubuntu. I know that many people nowadays recommend 64-bit technology, but for your purposes and with only 2 GB of RAM, 32 bits would be fine.

October 13th, 2011, 11:48 AM
With the tasks you do with the netbook, and the amount of RAM you have, using 64-bit OS wouldn't really make much, if any, difference over 32-bit OS.

Such tasks simply don't benefit from the ability to use larger numbers or higher precision that 64-bit computing would give you. If you were encoding video, rendering 3D graphics, or doing some other highly CPU-intensive media-related or scientific tasks things would be a bit different, but I kind of doubt any sane person would even want to do such things on Atom-powered netbook... ;)

On the other hand running the 64-bit version doesn't have much downsides either, perhaps slightly better overall performance thanks for the larger 64-bit registries on the CPU, balanced by the slightly larger memory usage of a 64-bit system. I'd say I doubt you'll notice any difference between 32-bit and 64-bit OS, either one should perform pretty much the same for you.