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Windows XP and 32-bit Support

Greg Kmethy
Graphisoft
Graphisoft
ARCHICAD 16 is the last release of ARCHICAD to support Windows XP and any 32-bit operating system. The next major release of ARCHICAD will be 64-bit only, and will support only 64-bit Operating Systems, including Windows 7 and Windows 8.

What does the change mean?

Customers with Windows XP; Windows Vista 32-bit; Windows 7 and Windows 8-32bit need to upgrade to 64-bit Windows 7 or Windows 8 before the launch of ARCHICAD 17.

Why is the change?

ARCHICAD works better on 64-bit systems. 64-bit means better performance and more optimal use of current hardware capabilities. 64-bit personal computers are available since 2003 and became mainstream since about 2007. ARCHICAD for 64-bit Windows is available since version 13, and current versions of ARCHICAD are optimized for 64-bit systems. On the Mac platform ARCHICAD is already 64-bit only since version 15.

What Windows Operating Systems are supported?

  ARCHICAD 15 ARCHICAD 16 ARCHICAD 17 +
  Full Edu Start Solo Full Edu Start Solo Full Edu Start Solo
Windows XP 32-bit
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Windows XP 64-bit
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- - - - -
Windows Vista 32-bit
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Windows Vista 64-bit
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- - * * *
Windows 7 32-bit
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Windows 7 64-bit
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Windows 8 32-bit * * *
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Windows 8 64-bit * - -
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* This version of Windows is capable of running ARCHICAD, but is not officially supported by GRAPHISOFT
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Certain versions of Start Edition are 32-bit applications. These can be run without problems on 64-bit systems.

How can I find out if my current Windows 7 or 8 is 64-bit?

Both Windows 7 and 8 have both 32-bit and 64-bit versions. Make sure you have the 64-bit version: In Control Panel » System and Security » System under "System type" it will either state "32-bit Operating System" or "64-bit Operating System"
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If your system is 32-bit, you will need to find out if your hardware is ready for 64-bit or not. It is possible that your 32-bit operating System was installed on a 64-bit ready computer. It is never the case vice versa: You can not install a 64-bit OS on a 32-bit computer.

How can I find out if my computer hardware is ready for 64-bit?

Start the Run... command line and type msinfo32.exe. After clicking OK, the System Information page appears and you will find the 64-bit capable computer listed as x64-based PC under System Type. More: Description of Microsoft System Information (Msinfo32.exe) Tool on Microsoft Support site
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If I need to buy a new computer, what do you recommend?

Find GRAPHISOFT's recommendation for hardware components here: RecommendedHardware

If I upgrade to a 64-bit system, will I still be able to run my old applications?

64-bit systems are capable of running 32-bit software applications, so you will be able to run most of your existing applications on a new operating system. There might be glitches however resulting from the feature differences of the operating system versions. For ARCHICAD GRAPHISOFT has documented known issues for Windows 7 and Windows 8 Drivers for your printers, scanners and other peripherals will need to be upgraded. Check with the manufacturer if a compatible driver is available.

How will I benefit from 64-bit?

The main benefit of 64-bit is that you can work with larger projects. On 32-bit systems if ARCHICAD's memory usage is close to the memory address space limit, then ARCHICAD might abort operations with "not enough memory to finish operation" error message, or can even crash. On 64-bit system this barrier is completely eliminated, and the only limit is the size of the physical RAM in your computer. (Note that 64-bit systems need more physical RAM than 32-bit systems to work optimally.) Some operations are also faster on 64-bit because of its superior memory management. See also: Questions and Answers about 64-bit

Will there be any changes in ARCHICAD functionality ?

Some features of the Google Earth Connections Add-On are 32-bit only, therefore these functionalities are not available in the 64-bit version of ARCHICAD. These are:
  • Import snapshot from Google Earth to ARCHICAD
  • Direct upload from ARCHICAD to Google Warehouse
  • Direct download from Google Warehouse to ARCHICAD
All other functions of the Google Earth Connections Add-on are available on 64-bit, and will be integrated in the next version of ARCHICAD:
  • Import and export in SKP format
  • Import and export of KMZ format
  • Direct upload of model from ARCHICAD to Google Earth
Read more about GoogleEarthConnections

What should I consider before upgrading my operating system?

Windows Upgrade Advisor is a tool from Microsoft that helps you determine if your hardware is ready for Windows 7/8: Help Center has articles on compatibility with each operating system: Here is a quick checklist for upgrading your system:

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