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I am using Windows as of now and want to install Ubuntu. I want to find out if my system is i386 or x86_64? How to do that? Thanks.

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try uname -m x86_64 means amd64 bit –  sendi Jun 4 '13 at 4:53
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5 Answers

Method : Use the set command

To use the set command to determine the processor type, follow these steps:

Click Start, click Run, type cmd in the Open box, and then press ENTER.
At the command prompt, type set, and then press ENTER.
Note the string that is displayed next to **PROCESSOR_IDENTIFIER**.

Method : Use Registry Editor

To use Registry Editor to determine the processor type, follow these steps:

Click Start, click Run, type regedit in the Open box, and then click OK.
Locate and then click the following registry subkey:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Environment
In the right pane, note the string that is displayed in the Data column for the PROCESSOR_IDENTIFIER registry entry.

Quit Registry Editor.


Using Windows Registry

Using Regedit

Go to Start -> Type regedit

Browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\HARDWARE\DESCRIPTION\System\CentralProcessor\0

From ProcessorNameString you will be able to see the name of your processor and from Identifier you will see the family of the processor and if it has 64 then it is 64-bit capable.

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Go to Start -> Right click on Computer -> Click Properties. Click on Windows Experience Index.

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Method: Using MSINFO32

Go to Start -> Type msinfo32.exe

from the System Information page under System Type you will find as x64-based PC.

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Using a utility software

Cpu-z, requires no installation. This executable allows you to quickly identify your CPU and gives you its technical characteristics such as the type of operating voltage, the instruction set run, the amount of cache and more information about your motherboard, chipset and memory (RAM). 

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http://www.cpuid.com/


for more help

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/888282

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+1 well done sir! –  jrg Feb 11 '12 at 20:11
    
What if you are not running Windows? What do you do then? –  Alvar Jun 4 '13 at 15:43
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Many of the suggestions here assume that if the system is capable of running 64-bit OS and programs, then the installed version of Windows is 64-bit as well. This is not necessarily the case, since it was common practice (and still is among some vendors) to install the i386 version by default since driver support was/is more mature there.

The best way to determine if you have a 64-bit-capable system is to figure out the CPU identifier and then using your favorite Internet search engine to find out if it is indeed a 64-bit processor or not.

I would say that unless your consumer-grade computer is from around 2004 or earlier, odds are very good that it is 64-bit-capable.

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Another option is to just boot up a 64 bit iso (CD's are cheap, right?) and if it fails, then you have 32 bit.

When I bought my windows license, I bought a 32 bit license (I don't know why) even though my laptop had a 64 bit processor. Just because you have a 32 bit OS doesn't mean you don't have a 64 bit processor.

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CD's are cheap, USB sticks are more friendly for the environment :) –  Lekensteyn Feb 10 '12 at 21:34
    
I couldn't agree more Lekensteyn ;) –  isaaclw Feb 12 '12 at 0:20
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This will tell you which version of Windows 7 you're running.

Click Start button, type system in the Start Search box, and then click System Information in the Programs list. When System Summary is selected in the navigation pane, the operating system is displayed as follows:

    For a 64-bit version operating system: x64-based PC appears for the System type under Item.
    For a 32-bit version operating system: x86-based PC appears for the System type under Item.

If it comes back that you're running a 64-bit system, that's all you need: you have a 64-bit system and it'll run 64-bit Ubuntu. If it comes back that you're running 32-bit Windows, you might still have a 64-bit CPU, but it's likely you have a 32-bit system.

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What if a 32 bit version of Windows is installed on a 64 bit system? –  stefgosselin Feb 16 '12 at 18:52
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Easiest way to check your System type

Right click My computer and select properties.

Processor type is written here .

System type : Version

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Are you on windows now? what if you are running Mac? What if the windows version is 32-bit but the cpu is 64-bit? –  Alvar Jun 4 '13 at 5:08
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