Are there still general problems using the Ubuntu 64bit version ? I heard that most of the programs do not work out of the box?

Will I notice a significant speed-boost? Until now I have always used Ubuntu 32 bit.

  • You won't notice a significant speed boost, you'll just need it if you have more than 3GBs of RAM. Mar 28, 2011 at 6:23

9 Answers 9


I heard that most of the programms, does not work out of the box ?

No this is silly. Everything works for me — and has for many years — on more than one computer.

The two things that have been an issue in the past are Java (works completely fine now) and Flash (now has a native plugin and while that doesn't get as much love from Adobe as its 32bit version, still does the job just fine).

Will I notice a significant speed-boost ?

Significant? Probably not significant but notable. You'd get a much better speed improvement by say switching to an SSD or doing a general upgrade.

I'd still say if you've got less than 3GB of RAM (and you won't upgrade to 4 or more), stick with 32bit. 64bit does use more RAM so if you're already squeezed, that won't help.

If you do have 4 or more, this should be a no-brainer. 64bit works. There probably are some very insignificant issues but I don't think I've found anything that has actually stopped me.

  • 5
    Bear in mind, Ubuntu will install the PAE kernel by default if it detects more than 3GB of RAM installed on your machine. This allows the OS to make use of up to 64GB of RAM so >3GB of RAM isn't necessarily a deal-breaker for 32 bit Linux (unlike Windows, say).
    – adamnfish
    Mar 28, 2011 at 23:40

All programs work well, right out of the box. Just like Oli said, if you have 3GB RAM or less, then stick to 32-bit. 64-bit uses more RAM, and if you have high RAM, say, 4GB or more, then 64-bit is the way to go.

As I said, all programs work well on 64-bit. The only program which has minor issues on 64-bit systems is Adobe Flash. Adobe only provides a 32-bit version of flash. You can run the 32-bit version of flash on 64-bit. It runs well, but a bit slower than on a native 32-bit system. A 64-bit version of Flash, called Flash 'Square' is currently in development. You can download it from here. I use Flash Square myself, and it works really well. Haven't noticed any issues yet.

  • never heard that Ubuntu 64 consume more RAM than 32bit. Is it really so? thanks
    – GGsalas
    Oct 20, 2011 at 19:50
  • I can not find it documented but i notice that 64 bit use more ram. My desktop is running 32 bit and laptop is running 64bit. Laptop's general ram use is higher then my desktop. Both are running same ubuntu version and in 2gb ram. (Desktop Processor: core2Duo Laptop processor: AMD DualCore APU)
    – shantanu
    Apr 7, 2012 at 6:49
  • 1
    @GGsalas a 64-bit version will use 64-bit chunks of memory for some things where a 32-bit version would use 32-bit chunks (most obviously, for pointers). That's what 64-bit ultimately means. A lot of things will be the same size in memory; all strings, all binary data, and even though the integer math will be done at 64-bits, most programs are still going to store 32 if they did before. The result is a bit more memory used, but far from double on everything. Speed impact is balanced between this affecting memory, and the processor being optimal in dealing with 64bit units.
    – Jon Hanna
    Aug 10, 2012 at 12:54

I've not seen anything go wrong with 64bit since 10.10, but I still use 32bit on the desktop due to the amount of RAM I have (3GB). All of our servers are running Ubuntu Server 64bit with absolutely no problems.


I can vouch that on Server hardware and on Desktop hardware 64-bit has worked fine for me for ages.


32 Bit will use less memory than 64 bit. It depends on the application, but it is worth considering if you have a small memory system. Here are some 32 vs 64 bit comparisons:



64bit works great if you're using more than 3 GB of RAM. This is what I have done: I have one partition running 10.04, some programs work only for 32bit 10.04 like portable apps; and on another partition, I have 64bit 10.10, almost all apps work with 64bit so that's what I would do to run both.


Everything out of the box. I use Maverick 64 for CAD rendering and 2D technical and artistic drawings.

Ares Commander / Blender / Photivo / Darktable / GIMP / Raw Therapee / Fotoxx - all out of the box.

32 bits apps. will work also well if you install ia32 library. Flash Square will not work in Firefox 4 which has a plugin loader for 32bits not for 64 so Flash Square is working actually in Chrome and Opera.

  • flashsquare works in firefox 4 quite fine. do you have nspluginwrapper installed?
    – RolandiXor
    Mar 28, 2011 at 5:03

Something that I've experienced even nowdays with the ubuntu x64 is the games some of the games on the ubuntu center doesn't work correctly on x64

and the rest of the software nowdays works fine the proble of the x64 compatibillity was just in the past not nowdays.


All programs works right in my Ubuntu x64, but skype sometimes freezes in time and stops working.

  • Can you provide more information or a link about the Skype freezing problem? Aug 22, 2012 at 10:16

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