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Changing Vista Versions

By Icoeph
Dec 31, 2008
  1. I recently purchased a desktop computer with Windows Vista Business (32 bit) as an operating system. I now have a version of Windows Ultimate (64 bit). When I put the disk in the drive, I get a message that The program cannot run because it is a 64 bit program and I am using a 32 bit OS. Is there was any way I could install the new OS without wiping my hard drive and losing all the programs, preferences, and information I have already installed?
     
  2. Ultiweap

    Ultiweap TS Enthusiast Posts: 606

    Hi,

    You would be able to upgrade your Vista Business to Ultimate if it is 32bit too. 64bit will never pass on a 32bit. So the only way you have to install that is to make a clean install.

    For your data you will need to burn it on a DVD or DVDs. But for the information some won't be save but some can as example if you have bookmarks on you browser you may backup them.
     
  3. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    Simple way is to buy a new hard drive, and install to that, then use the file transfer wizard of VISTA to migrate all the files and settings over to the new machine. Hard drives are so incredibly low priced nowadays, and you will always have uses for that original drive.
    You definitely cannot do what you ask without spending more in time than it deserves, and probably a lot more money than a new hard drive would cost.
     
  4. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    As mentioned by others, I don't think you can upgrade from the 32 to the 64. Raybay's suggestion is a good one. But I want to point out that even though 32 bit programs will run in the 64bit environment they will not run there without being installed there. So if you have your 32bit Vista Business on a secondary hard drive and Vista 64 on your primary you won't be able to just run the programs that were installed in 32bit windows in 64bit windows.
     
  5. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    We have Vista 32 and Vista 64 setup on two different machines.

    But we hate VISTA so badly that we hardly ever use either one... still, it can be handy to have both installs from time to time.
     
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