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mjmart61
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Registered: ‎05-20-2016
Location: US
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Message 1 of 5

Thinkpad TP E550 How to install Win7 32-bit instead of Win7 64-bit

Thinkpad TP E550 came with Win8 but store installed Win7.  It is 64-bit but I need 32-bit.  How do I change it?  I tried searching and cannot find any help about this.

 

I am going to upgrade to Win10 but I need 32-bit for our software so 32-bit has to be on it before the Win10 upgrade.

 

Please help.

JDGillis
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Message 2 of 5

Re: Thinkpad TP E550 How to install Win7 32-bit instead of Win7 64-bit

The only way would be to buy a 32-bit copy, reformat the hard drive and reinstall Windows from scratch.

 

I am surprised that your 32-bit software will not run, since the 64-bit version of Windows was designed to run 32 and 64 bit software and, in fact, most Windows software is still 32-bit, since not many software manufacturers have have even re-written their software as 64-bit yet.      

 

One the limitations of the 32-bit is that it can only see 4GB of memory (RAM) regardless of how much is installed, so if you are going to run Windows 10, you will probably find it a bit slow.   I have installed programs that were written for Windows 95 for people Windows 10 64-bit.   It requires a bit of tweaking to install and register the older .dll's etc, but it can be done.     

 

What software are you running that cannot run on a 64-bit, and what errors are you getting when you try?  

 

Are you trying to run a 16-bit software application perhaps, because in that case you would not be able to run it in a 64-bit OS environment, as 16-bit emulation was removed.    

 

In that instance, running a virtual machine of a 32-bit version of Windows 7 on 64-bit Windows 10 pro using Microsoft's HyperV, VMWare Player or VirtualBox, would be the way to go.    Virtual machines are pretty cool, and are basically another copy of Windows, Linux or even DOS that runs in a Window of your 64-bit Windows 7/8.1/10 Laptop.     

HOW TO: Install a Software Application using Compatibility Mode

https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windows/en-US/cdd894f8-1ee2-43e5-952b-d04c25779a7f/how-t...

 

Good Luck

Community SeniorMod
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Message 3 of 5

Re: Thinkpad TP E550 How to install Win7 32-bit instead of Win7 64-bit

The Windows 10 media creation tool allows selecting 32-bit and saving as an ISO or creating a flash drive installer.

 

You could try a clean install using created 32-bit media.  That might activate automatically using the '8 key in your BIOS.  Not  100% sure of that.

 

Otherwise you could update using 64-bit media, wait until it's activated, then do a clean 32-bit install.  The MS servers should remember the activation.

 

I have to say that I haven't tried this when going from 64 to 32 bits so I can't say with certainty that it will work.

 

Please back up anything important - or try on a "throw-away" drive.

 

[edit] Do you have a retail Window 7 key from the store install?  You should be able to activate a clean '10 install using that.  It isn't 32/64-bit sensitive as far as I know - but again I haven't tested that.

 

Z.


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mjmart61
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Message 4 of 5

Re: Thinkpad TP E550 How to install Win7 32-bit instead of Win7 64-bit

Thank you for your response.  I do have another machine that I use the Hyper-V and Win7 32-bit but was hoping to not have to do that on this machine.

Yes, I need 32-bit to run an old 16-bit application - well the installer is 16-bit anyway.  They are working on an update but it could be months.  

I think What I am going to do is install the 64-bit to a partition and then 32-bit to the other side - so I can benefit from 64-bit but still be able to use that program.

 

mjmart61
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Message 5 of 5

Re: Thinkpad TP E550 How to install Win7 32-bit instead of Win7 64-bit

Thanks for your reply.  

I will try your suggestion on a partition and see how that goes.  I did find a disc of Win7 32-bit so hopefully, that will work.  Thanks again.

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