Testing carried out in ZDNet's labs in Germany has shown that Microsoft's forthcoming 64-bit version of Windows XP is likely to perform well.
Release Candidate one of Windows XP Professional x64 Edition was released to testers just before Christmas 2004. This product, which could go 'gold' as early as March this year, will be the first version of Windows designed for systems running 64-bit processors.
We found that this latest build (1289) installed without problems on our AMD Athlon 64-based test system, and showed no signs of instability in use. Users are also unlikely to see any performance drop when running today's 32-bit applications under 64-bit Windows. However, with no 64-bit Windows applications available to test, it's not yet possible to predict accurately what the performance benefits will be from upgrading to the new platform.
RC1 also outshines the current version of Windows XP for supporting new hardware, such as Nvidia's Nforce4 chipset.
Click here to read the full test results.