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I'd like to install ubuntu 12.04 on windows virtual pc on 64 bit windows 8. My laptop has corei7 processor, so I know that it can support 64 bit ubuntu. But I'm not sure what would be the best choice, 32 bit or 64 bit? Can Ubuntu 32 bit run on 64 windows 8?

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If your machine has 64 bit capabilities, use 64-bit Ubuntu – SimplySimon Aug 10 '13 at 8:25
up vote 2 down vote accepted

You can install either Ubuntu 32-bit or Ubuntu 64-bit. It depends on the amount of memory that you are allocating to your virtual machine. If you are allocating 3GB or more memory to your virtual machine, then you should choose Ubuntu 64-bit, otherwise you may choose either one. The performance of Ubuntu 64-bit will be noticeably better than Ubuntu 32-bit if you have allocated 3GB or more of memory to the virtual machine. By the way it is recommended to allocate not more than half of the available memory in your system to the virtual machine.

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Ubuntu 32 bit (or any Linux 32-bit) can use well more than 3GB if the PAE kernel is installed. – Stabledog Aug 10 '13 at 6:11
@Stabledog In my opinion installing a non-default Linux kernel would not be a good idea to recommend to someone who may be a new Linux user. – karel Aug 10 '13 at 6:15
My laptop has 4GB available memory, so I should allocate only 2GB at most to virtual machine. 32-bit will be the better choice for me. Thanks. – Pyone Kay Khine Aug 10 '13 at 8:42
@karel: I don't agree with your recommendation -- Ubuntu packages the PAE kernel in a user-friendly form, and then the average user never has to bother it, it's no more trouble than any other kernel. But the point is that the advice here is at best incomplete: it implies that the 32-bit kernels can't use more than 3GB, which is likely to mislead other readers who come along and don't know any better. Our goal is to inform people, not protect them from information that might be too advanced for their level of experience. – Stabledog Aug 11 '13 at 16:20
Stabledog While your point about the PAE kernel is of course valid, a statistical result is only valid if you have a large enough sample size, and the context of a question about an Ubuntu installation on a VM in Virtual PC does not represent a large enough sample size that your advice concerning goals would necessarily apply in this particular case. – karel Aug 13 '13 at 3:32

Yes it can. But I would choose 64bit. It will run faster. Only choose 32 bit if the drivers you need are only made for a 32 bit OS. But as your running it as a virtual pc that probably won't matter.

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