Do I need a 32-bit system to access certain websites?

Barry Buchert January 21, 2013
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I am going to college and I am taking a computer course. Now the course requires website access and I am having trouble accessing the site in question. I talked to the site’s tech support about this and they told me their site is only 32-bit and I have a 64-bit system and that I need a 32-bit system for their web site.

I have Windows 7 64-bit installed on my system. Is their anyway I can get me computer to include a 32-bit system for their site? Without changing my whole operation system for a 32-bit system? Is this right? Their tech support was a joke!

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  1. Phil Botsky
    January 28, 2013 at 9:53 pm

    Website has nothing to do with OS:

  2. Yashodhan Bhatt
    January 25, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    There is no such stuff Barry,the trouble might lie in the website itself and(or) your system.Try accessing it from some other 32-bit system.

    • Barry
      January 28, 2013 at 10:21 pm

      It was the website itself. My internet explorer was a 64 bit and their site was only a 32 bit. I got on it with my old xp system with an 32 bit internet explorer. Thank you for your answer.

  3. Mahesh Kumar
    January 23, 2013 at 5:55 pm

    I think they are trying to be funny here. The website will work irrespective of it being 32 or 64 bit . Just try accessing the website through proxy (they may be blacklisting certain IP's).

  4. Jeff Fisher
    January 23, 2013 at 9:45 am

    I've run a Linux 64bit Operating System on my PC for over 5 years and have never had a problem accessing any website. No way should you have to alter anything to access any website. Perhaps try another browser but that's all. You should not be having any problems at all. Try another college.

    • Oron Joffe
      January 23, 2013 at 11:18 am

      Try accessing Microsoft's Outlook Web Access (OWA)! Anything other than IE can only access the "lite" version. A variety of corporate-oriented packages are likewise tied to a particular browser (usuall IE6!), so it's _entirely_ possible for a website not to work well with all browsers, but of course it reflects badly on those who wrote the site and those who deployed it.

      • Jeff Fisher
        January 23, 2013 at 11:36 am

        "it reflects badly on those who wrote the site and those who deployed it" - exactly.
        Another of Microsoft’s attempts to rule the world.

        • Oron Joffe
          January 23, 2013 at 11:41 am

          Nice to be in the company of like minded people ; - )

    • Oron Joffe
      January 23, 2013 at 11:19 am

      Barry, your question seems to have touched a raw nerve! I'm curious to know, have you had a chance to talk to your college's IT people again and have they been able to give you more details about what would work and what won't, and why?

  5. ferdinan Sitohang
    January 23, 2013 at 4:07 am

    Can you give more information about the error message? Like others said, commonly, that web applications never related with your Operating system type, whether it is 32 or 64. Just suggestion, try to have a newest browser application in your laptop, plus try to access it using different browser application, for the most IE has lots of problem, try use chrome or firefox. Thank you

  6. Kuriakopoulos Marios
    January 22, 2013 at 6:29 pm

    websites have nothing to do with your system

  7. Ahmed Musani
    January 22, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    no it has nothing to do with your OS.

  8. Shane La Horie
    January 22, 2013 at 11:48 am

    I agree with most of the answers here it does not matter what type of system you have the hardware is unimportant. If you are having problems try using a different web browser.

  9. Alex Perkins
    January 22, 2013 at 10:58 am

    There shouldn't be a problem regardless of whether your OS is 64 bit or 32. You could try downloading a 32 bit browser and see if helps.

  10. Muo TechGuy
    January 22, 2013 at 10:10 am

    I would be seriously worried about taking a computer course at a college whose technical help team told you that. Run, run like hell.

  11. Ayush Mittal
    January 22, 2013 at 7:41 am

    You Can Have This-:
    64 Bit Operating System Supports 32 bit Software Also So You Just Install A 32bit Browser Any one Mozilla,chrome,rocket melt,safari,IE.And Then Open The Site.The PRoblem Maybe The Java Applications On The Site Must BE Specific To Old Jdk 32 Bit Version So You Can Try What I Say If It Works Reply Surely And Like IT

  12. Ian Bunting
    January 22, 2013 at 7:02 am

    Either they are trying to be funny, or are simply misinformed.
    32 or 64-bit is in simple terms hardware capability of your CPU that when used with suitable software (a 64-bit OS) allows amongst other features the addressing of a larger amount of memory per application, and the use of more than approx 3.5gb of RAM by the OS.

    It has NO effect at all on anything external, only performance locally and even then the amount of benefit is often questionable, apart from specific cases.

    What sounds more likely is a reliance on a plugin which comes in a 32-bit version only, though most 32-bit applications should work fine on a 64-bit OS as long as they are used in a 32-bit version of the browser.

    A 64-bit edition of the browser will NEED 64-bit editions of the plugins for them to function, something many might not have yet.

  13. Junil Maharjan
    January 22, 2013 at 4:59 am

    I have never heard this. Websites are accessible no matter what bit-OS they use. If bit was the matter then it would be really hard to access many websites through mobile devices. I think the sites might have been blocked by your network admin from college. Please check with them. hope this helped.

  14. Flavius Graur
    January 22, 2013 at 3:39 am

    Our college also has such a poorly written site. Some sites make use of ActiveX controls or other add-ins/plugins, and those plugins are 32bit only. One solution would be a virtual machine running a 32bit operating system.

  15. Oron Joffe
    January 21, 2013 at 10:40 pm

    The web site itself cannot specific to 32 bit. However, it can be tied to a particular browser (usually an old crappy version of Internet Explorer), and this browser may be available only in a 32 bit version. It's also possible that it relies on a particular plug-in which is 32 bit only (though frankly it would be extraordinary these days). Finally, and most likely, it may be that they your college requires you to use *some other software* (e.g. VPN client, security software etc) which only runs on 32 bit versions of Windows.
    In any event, so many new computers are sold with Win 64 only, that your college's position is not sustainable. I suggest you contact them again, find out EXACTLY what their requirements are, and if indeed they require a 64 bit version of Windows then you should complain to their head of IT.

  16. Rudy Rodriguez
    January 21, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    I've been running 7 64 bit with no problems accessing any website. Try running chrome with the IE tab add on. if that does not work try updating your browser to IE 9. By default your browser runs on 32bit. Plus the websites are designed for the browsers not the OS.

  17. Rudy Rodriguez
    January 21, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    your IE by default is running on 32bit. you have to choose it to run 64. I've been running 7 64bit from the beginning with no problems accessing websites. try using chrome with ie tab or upgrade your ie. websites are built according to the browser not the os.

  18. ha14
    January 21, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/896457

    the difference of IE 32 bit and 64 bit is the plugins, some do not have support of 64bit IE
    http://www.pcworld.com/article/247400/should_i_use_the_32_or_64_bit_version_of_internet_explorer.html

    If it's a Win7 64-bit computer, you have two versions of Internet Explorer: IE 32-bit (the default) and IE 64-bit (cannot be the default). Shortcuts to both should be listed in your Start menu.

    32-bit and 64-bit Windows: frequently asked questions
    http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/32-bit-and-64-bit-Windows-frequently-asked-questions

  19. Jan Fritsch
    January 21, 2013 at 7:10 pm

    That's the first time ever I heard of a website being architecture dependent. Does this site host some in-browser application e.g. in Java or Silverlight or something?

    Anyway, even if you have a 64-bit Windows you can run 32-bit software and there shouldn't be any problem.

    From the the information given I assume you are using IE8?
    Click Start Menu > All Programs and you will find two entries, one "Internet Explorer (64 Bit)" and one "Internet Explorer" which would be the 32 bit version.
    If you are using a different browser e.g. Chrome or Firefox they are both 32-bit only.

  20. ha14
    January 21, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    internet browser should be independent from windows OS bit version, you can boot from a live linux cd and try to access the site in question.

  21. Tech Nech
    January 21, 2013 at 7:05 pm

    What? I haven't heard anything like that up till now! Maybe its a joke. You access your websites using internet via browsers so I don't think it has anything related to your operating systems or hardware's.

    • salim benhouhou
      January 22, 2013 at 9:15 am

      i agree websites can be accessed via any browser whether your system is 32-bit or 64-bit it has nothing to do with your hardware .

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