My wife wants me to speed up her work at home computer. My plan is to put the OS on a SSD and double the memory to 4g.
It's an older AMD 3.10 dual core. I just loaded a no longer used Vista 32 license to test it while I wait for the hardware to arrive. I'm wondering if I should spring for the W7 64 or stick with the paid for Vista 32? Or possibly install Vista 64.
The fact that you are installing Win Vista on a SSD and increasing the RAM to 4GB should mean that Vista should be a bit more responsive. Widows Vista uses more resources than Win XP did so the extra RAM should definitely help. However, since you only have Vista 32-bit that means only about 3.2GB - 3.4GB of RAM available. Unless you also have a key for Vista 64-bit, there is really no reason to buy it.
Purchasing Windows 7 64-bit will give you full access to the 4GB of RAM. It also uses a little less resources than Win Vista so Win 7 will be slightly more responsive than Win Vista in general. But I would say the difference is subtle and less noticeable compared to installing Vista on the SSD and additional RAM.
It does depend on what your wife is doing with the PC for example, if she is video edirting then the move to windows 7 x64 would be benefical but you would need a better computer.
Your current PC is good for any 32 bit Os but might suffer somewhat with a 64 bit OS.
Although Vista (I've got Vista x32 on my internet PC [this one I'm using now] and I've got 4 gb of ram but only 3070 mb can be accessed which is good enough) is rather sluggish for general use, it is suited to certain games, software, programs and applications that have been specifically coded for us with Vista. There are some Pen Tablets that can only be used with Vista as with other addons etc.
If you upgrade to Windows 7, you might have to also consider a new printer, a pen tablet, web camera, etc.
Consider the amount of free space available (should be about 20% free space with Vista) and when was the last time you defragged the hdd, and how many desktop icons refer toactual files and not shortcuts, and whether there are apps on start up that don't necessarily need to, and many other things.
If your partner is just doing basic spreadsheets or typing, it won't matter if you got a super-dooper fast rocket type PC, her typing speed won't get better.
Thanks for your thoughts. Because this machine will use onboard video 3.4 GB of ram will be all I have to use anyhow. So Vista 32 will likely work fine.
I thought they can be changed 64bit and back and forth.
Under the EULA you can install either 32- or 64-bit with each license, change to either as often as you want. This is not the subject of this thread.
I had just bought a re-manufactured laptop with W7 32 but it actually had 64 installed on the machine but sent a unopened 32 disc. I used that key to activate it. So if I have a Vista 64 disc can I reinstall it and activate it with the same key?