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When is it possible to switch between 32 bit and 64 bit versions of Microsoft Operating Systems by using recovery media?

Customers who own a Lenovo Think PC with a Microsoft Vista or Microsoft Windows 7 license may obtain software recovery media from Lenovo Support Centers which would allow switching to the alternative bit version for the same operating system. This means for example that a customer with a Microsoft Windows 7 Professional (32 bit) licensed Lenovo PC can obtain recovery CD's/DVD's from a Lenovo Support Center for Windows 7 Professional (64 bit). There are limitations to obtaining the alternative bit recovery media.

Limitations
  1. 32 bit and 64 bit versions for each operating system are not available for all recovery DVDs in all areas. Versions are in limited supply. However, the policies permitting the bits to be switched do apply worldwide.
  2. The switch is permitted for the exact same language and version of the operating system (ie Windows Vista to Windows Vista; Windows 7 to Windows 7).
    • Only the bits (32 or 64) may change for the recovery media that the Support Center provides to customers.
    • This means it is not possible for example to switch between English Vista Business (64 bit) and Spanish Vista Business. Language must remain the same, ie English to English.
    • This means it is not possible for example to switch between Vista Business (64 bit) and Windows 7 Professional (32 or 64 bit). Operating system must remain the same.
  3. Switching to the alternative bit version requires uninstalling the original bit version of the operating system. Only one version may be used at a time.
  4. The Support Center will charge a fee. The charge may vary by region. However, it will be the same charge as for providing recovery media that is provided by Support Centers for a non-warranty issue.
  5. Systems that have Microsoft Starter operating system or Diskless PC Edition operating system licenses are not eligible.
  6. There is no option to switch when the system uses a 32-bit processor. (Note: All currently and recently manufactured Lenovo PC's have 64 bit processors.)
Important order processing information
  1. The license for the operating system is what determines the version of the recovery media that Lenovo Support Centers will provide. The type of "license" is indicated by the COA or Certificate of Authenticity. The COA is a sticker that is often located on the bottom of laptops or the back of desktop computers. Here are examples describing how to find the COA on a PC from the Microsoft web site.
  2. Lenovo Support Centers will determine a system's licensed operating system by reviewing warranty information associated with the Lenovo PC system's identification numbers including the "Type" , "Model" and "Serial Number". If warranty information is not available on-line then a Lenovo proof of purchase provided to the Support Center may serve in it's place. How do I find my product identification numbers (machine type / model or part number) and serial number.
  3. How do I contact a Lenovo Support Center to place an order?
    Click on the "Contact Us" button and follow the support process.
Related topic

How to downgrade from certain versions of Windows Vista and Windows 7 to Windows XP

Additional examples
Lenovo system purchased with Permitted to order from Lenovo Support Center
Windows 7 license other than Starter or Diskless PC Edition (32 bit) Recovery DVDs for Windows 7 (32 or 64 bit)
Windows 7 license other than Starter or Diskless PC Edition (64 bit) Recovery DVDs for Windows 7 (32 or 64 bit)
Windows Vista license other than Starter or Diskless PC Edition (32 bit) Recovery DVDs for Windows Vista (32 or 64 bit)
Windows Vista license other than Starter or Diskless PC Edition (64 bit) Recovery DVDs for Windows Vista (32 or 64 bit)
Windows XP Professional license (32 bit) Recovery DVDs for Windows XP Professional license (32 bit) only.
English Vista Business (64 bit) Recovery DVDs for English Vista Business (32 or 64 bit) only. (Other languages not permitted. ie. Spanish)

  • Alias ID:
  • Document ID: HT082425
  • Last Updated :7/31/2014
  • (c) 2014 Lenovo