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What is the difference between 32-bit PAE and 64-bit kernels?

asked 2015-12-27 13:13:34 -0500

Cyber Linux gravatar image

Hi, As I know the 32-bit PAE allowed to read more than 3 GB of RAM, but if I use 32-bit PAE, will be the same performances of 64-bit while my CPU accept 64 bit? Thanks

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answered 2015-12-27 14:49:28 -0500

sideburns gravatar image

That's an excellent question. The big advantage of installing a PAE kernel is that if you upgrade your RAM to more than 4 GB, and have a 32-bit system, you can gain access to all of that new RAM without backing up everything and replacing your existing system with a 64-bit version. Currently, I'm using PAE on my desktop for exactly that reason, but if I needed to reinstall, I'd go with 64-bit. As far as a performance hit goes, it's hard for me to say because I'm not a hard-core gamer and don't use that many memory-intensive programs. My guess, however, is that there's little if any difference, but if there is, I'm sure that somebody else here will be more than happy to correct me.

And, in case you're wondering, the change was quite simple: I installed the PAE kernel and appropriate support packages, rebooted into it and after making sure that all was OK, I removed the non-PAE versions so that they wouldn't get updated.

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Using a 64 bit kernel , whenever your hardware supports it will gain you some performance and is therefore always recommended as it guarantees that the all the applications you run have been compiled to support modern processor instructions

tomodachi gravatar imagetomodachi ( 2016-01-05 05:23:25 -0500 )edit

answered 2015-12-27 15:20:04 -0500

aeperezt gravatar image

Well, there are architecture differences between i686 and x86_64, for instance a i686 has a 32 bit instruction set while x86_64 uses a 64 bit instruction set but it will also has a greater memory bus and CPU registers so it has a native way to take advantage of greater memory, while PAE kernels will allow i686 CPU to access more RAM not all programs will take that advantage of it and will not take advantage of the modern instruction set and records. Most x86_64 processors are i686 compatible or emulate the instruction.

Hope this help clarify it

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Asked: 2015-12-27 13:13:34 -0500

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Last updated: Dec 27 '15