Why are 32-bit programs still running on my 64-bit version of Windows?

2014-Sep-09 | Tags: 32vs64emulatorlearnwindows8wow64

Start64!Most PC’s shipping these days are rocking 64-bit versions of Windows 8.0 or 8.1. If you’re not sure how to check which bit architecture you have (32-bit or 64-bit) in Windows, there’s a quick command line trick for that. Today I want to show you something peculiar that you may not have noticed but once I bring it up you’ll certainly have questions.

Assuming you’re rocking a 64-bit OS, kick open the Task Manager and look in the process list.

In the Process tab you should see a few processes with the (32 bit) prefix tacked on the end.


  • What’s up with that?
  •  Why isn’t your 64-bit PC running all your application in 64-bit mode?
  •  It seems like you’re not getting the most performance from your system right?

There are a myriad of benefits from running a 64-bit version of Windows such as better memory usage and tighter security so why are some of your applications failing to take advantage of that?