A question that users often ask is if they have 32-bit or 64-bit Windows. This is pretty easy to figure out if you already have Windows installed on your system. It’s only a matter of looking the information up. It’s worth asking though, what determines which Windows to install? The 32-bit or 64-bit Windows installation is based on your processor’s architecture. Put simply, you have to check if your processor is 32-bit or 64-bit, in order to determine which Windows you need to install. Here’s how to check your processor’s architecture as well as how you can check if you have 32-bit or 64-bit Windows installed on your system.

Processor – 32-bit Or 64-bit

Open Command Prompt on your Windows machine. If you, understandably don’t have Windows installed and need to determine the processor’s architecture, we’ll get to that as well. In Command Prompt, enter the following and tap the Enter key.

echo %PROCESSOR_ARCHITECTURE%

If the Command Prompt returns AMD64, it means your processor’s architecture is 64-bit.

Command Prompt With No Windows Installed

You will need a bootable Windows 10 USB to do this. Insert the USB and make sure it is the first boot device. You can change the boot device order from the BIOS. The Windows set-up will load. Select your language, input method, and time zone to proceed. When you see the ‘Install Now’ screen, do not click the Install Now button. Instead, look at the bottom left where you will see a ‘Repair your computer’ option. Select it.

Next, select the Troubleshoot option. Under Advanced Options, select Command Prompt. Run the command to find out if your processor is 32-bit or 64-bit.

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Windows – 32-bit Or 64-bit

Finding out if you have Windows 32-bit or 64-bit is easy.

Windows 10

Open the Settings app on Windows 10. Go to the System group of settings and select the About tab. Scroll down, and it will tell you if you have 32-bit or 64-bit Windows installed.

Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1, Windows 10

This works on all versions of Windows from Windows 7 to Windows 10. Open the Control Panel. Go to System Security. Click the ‘View amount of RAM and Processor speed’ option.

This will show you a comprehensive summary of your system including what architecture Windows you have installed.

It’s important that the Windows system type you install matches what your processor is built for. If it doesn’t you will run into problems that will seemingly have to solution or even an apparent cause. If you’re installing an app and you have to choose between x56 and x64, you will again need to know the system type in order to install the correct version of the app.