Program Files and Program Files x86: What’s The Difference?

Program Files and Program Files x86

Are you considering between Program Files and Program Files x86? Then You NEED to take a look at Colorfy’s following article.

If you are using a Microsoft Windows operating system, then probably you have come throughout the program Files vs. program files (x86) folders in your hard disk. While they seem to function the identical function, there’s a small gap, which produces the question of why?

What are the Program Files(PF)?

At a 64-bit Windows OS, the 64-bit software is installed in the program files folder. This OS provides the capacity to perform 64 bit and 32-bit programs concurrently. It’s capable of conducting 32-bit software with an emulator layer.

What is Program Files x86?

The 32-bit applications are set up in PF (x86) folder. The objective of getting these two folders will be to provide backward compatibility. To put it differently, it enables executing 32-bit applications quickly with no problem on 64-bit machines. What’s more, storing all of the files precisely in the same folder will make it hard to access the documents. Hence, the 32-bit software is set up into this individual folder.

Program Files x86

PF (x86) folder is only on 64-bit Windows operating systems like XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10, etc.. If this folder is accessible, it signals that the computer has a 64-bit Windows operating system.

Since the software is in two different folders, the OS will comprehend a particular program’s settings. Moreover, there may be both 32 bit and a 64-bit version of a similar program.

Difference Between Program Files vs. Program Files x86

Program Files and Program Files x86 Difference

When speaking about the program files folders vs. program files x86 folders, you should be aware that there are 32-bit and 64-bit Windows OS.

On 64-bit versions of Windows, 64-bit software will soon be installed in the PF folders. But, 64-bit versions of Windows also encourage 32-bit programs using a compatibility layer called WoW64. To divide the 32-bit and 64-bit programs on your computer, Microsoft chooses to set up 32-bit programs into the C:\Program Files (x86) folder.

The significant difference between them is that PF only contains 64-bit programs and software. In contrast, the latter PF (x86) comprises 32-bit programs and programs.

Does Windows 10 Independent the 64-bit and 32-bit Programs?

Windows 10 divides the 64-bit and 32-bit Programs using different program file folders, which is quite convenient for consumers to differentiate them.

In any case, also, it considers the software struggles issue. If you put in a 32-bit and 64-bit version of the identical program on your computer, it can cause conflicts. By installing them into various folders, the chance of disputes could be significantly reduced.

Additionally, the separation helps to ensure that the outdated 32-bit programs can get the job done correctly and lowers the odds of these unintentionally interacting with 64-bit computer software. That means you’re able to discover that there’s are no drawbacks to different the 64-bit and 32-bit programs in your Windows OS.

Read also: How To: Manually Uninstall ShadowProtect SPX from Windows systems

Why Does Windows Name the 32-bit Folder ” Program Files(x86)”?

X86 is just another way of speaking to 32-bit processors. Initially, 16-bit processors (notably the 8086 and 8088 processor architectures) were called “x86”. The title was later expanded to incorporate the 32-bit 80386 and 80486 processor households.

When 64-bit processors were released, they have been known as x64 to differentiate the newer 64-bit structure from the older processor lines. So sometimes people use “x86” and “x64” to reference these “32-bit” and “64-bit architectures. And that is the main reason Windows titles the 32-bit program folder like PF (x86).

Comparison Chart

Program Files and Program Files (x86) Comparison Chart


After reading this article, you ought to be aware of the distinction between the Program Files folders and Program Files (x86) folder, in addition to why Windows 10 divides 64-bit and 32-bit programs on your computer. In case you have any queries or distinct remarks regarding the hyperlinks, you can share it by leaving a message in the comment section.

Video: How to find the Program Files (x86) folder in Win 7

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