Where can I buy a new 32-bit laptop that runs Windows?

16
Posted 19th Feb
My mum needs a new laptop. It has to be 32bit as she still has 16 bit accounts software that she uses (Emulation is not an option. I tried this, but it was too complicated for her. And learning a new software is beyond her).

Is there anywhere I can buy a new laptop that is 32bit? Most the places I see only have 64 bit laptops. I am hoping to find one that has a SSD drive (Fitting an SSD drive is beyond me). I would prefer not to use a local company that builds a system for you. Thanks!
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I thought 32bit will run on a 64bit pc? So you need the 32bit os version if there is one
Edited by: "wayners" 19th Feb
wayners19/02/2020 09:12

I thought 32bit will run on a 64bit pc? So you need the 32bit os version …I thought 32bit will run on a 64bit pc? So you need the 32bit os version if there is one


When I've tried installing 32 bit OS on 64 bit hardware, it won't run the 16 bit apps. However, I could be doing something wrong!
What's the app she's using?
You mention emulation, what about compatability mode?
Edited by: "esar" 19th Feb
esar19/02/2020 09:26

What's the app she's using?


It's an old 16 bit app called Final Accounts. The vendor doesn't make a non-16 bit version (It's been discontinued and replaced by a new product that doesn't have all the features of the old one). She's tried learning other software, but she always comes back to Final Accounts.
esar19/02/2020 09:29

You mention emulation, what about comparability mode?


Tried that, it just won't run 16 bit apps.
Just install the 32bit version of Windows 10 and enable the 16bit subsystem (NTVDM) which isn't enabled by default.
captainbeaky19/02/2020 09:51

Have you tried compatibility mode when using w10 32 …Have you tried compatibility mode when using w10 32 bit?https://www.lifewire.com/run-older-programs-with-windows-10-compatibility-mode-4587064


It's not a minor compatibility issue, the entire 16-bit emulation system was never included in 64-bit versions of Windows. The last 16-bit version of Windows was Windows 3.11 so when Windows XP 64 came along two decades later it's no surprise there weren't enough applications left in use to make it worth reimplementing.

I believe it (the NT Virtual DOS Machine - NTVDM) is still included in Windows 10 32-bit, although disabled by default. If you've still got Windows 10 32-bit installed you could try re-enabling it.

I'm not sure if there are still any 32-bit CPUs being manufactured. If there are they'd be the very low end and slow ones, all the mainstream ones went 64-bit years ago.

If emulation didn't work then your other option is a virtual machine for whichever operating system the program is designed for.


p.s. The most complicated part of an SSD install is reinstalling the OS and you've already done that. Swapping the hardware over is easy.
captainbeaky19/02/2020 09:51

Have you tried compatibility mode when using w10 32 …Have you tried compatibility mode when using w10 32 bit?https://www.lifewire.com/run-older-programs-with-windows-10-compatibility-mode-4587064


groovypost.com/how…10/
Gormond19/02/2020 10:30

Just install the 32bit version of Windows 10 and enable the 16bit …Just install the 32bit version of Windows 10 and enable the 16bit subsystem (NTVDM) which isn't enabled by default.


Do you have know of any guide which explains how to do this. The last time I tried, I couldn't get the 16 bit apps to work under 32 bit.
kutekitty19/02/2020 10:57

Do you have know of any guide which explains how to do this. The last time …Do you have know of any guide which explains how to do this. The last time I tried, I couldn't get the 16 bit apps to work under 32 bit.


@esar posted a link on how to do it - groovypost.com/how…10/
Simplest option, find a very old pc, install windows 3.1, cry as you realise how bad it is compared to now, but also tears of joy that you’ve solved the issue.

Proper answer, move away from the old software, all you are doing is compounding the issues by keeping it going.
As you’ve already found, it’s close to impossible to run it now, this will only get worse.
There is no reason there isn’t other software out there that does everything you are looking for
Edited by: "Kbramman" 19th Feb
Can the software be ran on machine with no Internet connection? You could use an old laptop with XP if no internet was needed.

Have you tried setting up a simple virtual box shortcut and having it auto start so the PC loads straight into the 32bit OS? We used Virtual box to resolve a similar issue and some of the oldest least tech savvy users did not have issues.
Kbramman19/02/2020 12:00

Simplest option, find a very old pc, install windows 3.1, cry as you …Simplest option, find a very old pc, install windows 3.1, cry as you realise how bad it is compared to now, but also tears of joy that you’ve solved the issue. Proper answer, move away from the old software, all you are doing is compounding the issues by keeping it going. As you’ve already found, it’s close to impossible to run it now, this will only get worse. There is no reason there isn’t other software out there that does everything you are looking for


Totally agree, this is how banks have 3 day outages, they use BACS software from '91 and it goes down. Running on legacy systems that fail because people were too lazy or tight to find a replacement solution. OP if you get it working you still need to be actively looking for a replacement.
Edited by: "mogsog" 19th Feb
Pretty much your only option is 32 bit windows, I don't think a nyone has made 32bit hardware for over a decade. It should make a difference though if it doesn't work on 32bit Windows with 64bit hardware it probably won't on 32 either (you'd have to get some really old second hand stuff).
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