We’ve been getting some questions from our JD Edwards EnterpriseOne clients about moving from a 32-bit to a 64-bit processor, so we decided to address these concerns in a two-part blog series. This first article will explain what a 64-bit system is and why you’ll want to make the move if you’re using JD Edwards EnterpriseOne. With that, let’s dive right in. 

What is the Difference Between a 32-bit and 64-bit System? 

In computing, there are two types of processors: 32-bit and 64-bit. The bit numbers tell us how much memory a processor can have access from a CPU register.  Here’s the breakdown:

  • A 32-bit system can access 232 memory addresses (which translates to 4 GB of RAM or physical memory)
  • A 64-bit system can access 264 memory addresses (which translates to 18 Quintillion GB of RAM, or any amount of memory greater than 4 GB) 

ERPs—Back in the Day

Back in the 90s and early 2000s, many computers made at the time were 32-bit machines, and so JD Edwards created EnterpriseOne to support that ecosystem. This means its foundation code accesses memory with 32-bit addresses, and while a 32-bit system limits the total amount of memory accessible by a single process, that was not an issue when the product was initially developed and implemented. 

But times have changed. 

ERPs—Modern Times

Today, JD Edwards customers are not only using more massive datasets, but also the way we use our software has changed as well, a one-two punch which has pushed the limits of the current 32-bit infrastructure. Luckily, a 64-bit register can theoretically reference 16.8 million terabytes (16 exabytes) of memory, making it able to access over four billion times the physical memory of a 32-bit processor. Important note—your operating system will need to be designed to take advantage of the greater access to memory, so keep that in mind.

In addition, a 64-bit processor can handle more data than a 32-bit processor because it can tackle more at once, not to mention a higher capacity for storing more computational values, including memory addresses, allowing you to do more multitasking without the lag. 

Why Should I Upgrade to 64-bit Processing? 

The most common question we hear from clients is: “Why should I upgrade to a 64-bit?” First, it’s important to understand that upgrading is entirely optional, but enabling a 64-bit is a seamless migration, and you have a lot to gain by doing so. 

Here are some other benefits to consider: 

  • JD Edwards EnterpriseOne now runs natively on 64-bit operating systems, so an upgrade will eliminate the need for 32-bit compatibility overhead. 
  • The same JD Edwards EnterpriseOne applications will consume fewer CPU cycles in the 64-bit case. 
  • An upgrade to 64-bit processors can result in shorter runtimes for batch applications and faster response times for interactive applications. (This is mainly due to faster runtimes of C Business Functions which run most of the business logic.)
  • Larger per-process memory capacity means that larger datasets can be run by single UBE jobs or in single call-objects kernels. 
  • 64-bit enables you to adopt future technology and future-proof your IT environments.
  • Transitioning to a 64-bit doesn’t impact your business processes or data. It is a technical uplift managed with the JD Edwards Tools Foundation. 

What’s Next?

We hope that answered all of your questions about what a 64-bit processor is and why it’s essential to upgrade in your IT environment, but if not, we have senior-level JD Edwards consultants who can help you understand your options and assist with next steps, whatever that looks like for your business. 

And if you have more questions about moving to a 64-bit, stay tuned! We’re working on our second article in this series to address the challenges and solutions when moving to a 64-bit processing setup.