Dr.Technical
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Dr.Technical asked on
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Can someone point me to a clear and coherent discussion of multi-core CPU support for Windows 7 Ultimate x64?

I have searched on the web and on this site, but cannot seem to locate a clear statement of whether the 64-bit version of Windows 7 Ultimate will fully support, recognize and utilize a quad-core processor. 

I've seen at least one version comparison chart that says that Windows 7 Ultimate only supports 2 CPU's. 

Does that mean support for a motherboard with two CPU sockets (regardless of the number of cores)? 

Or does that mean that there is support only for a single dual-core processor? 

I think Microsoft needs to create some VERY clear documentation on this score.  I don't want to try to build my own PC, only to find that my quad-core CPU will not be fully utilized by Windows 7 x64.  Any help?
Chris.H - Support Engineer
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Chris.H - Support Engineer replied on

Hello Dr.Technical,

Thank you for visiting the Microsoft Answers Community.

PCs with multi-core processors:
Windows 7 was designed to work with today's multi-core processors. All 32-bit versions of Windows 7 can support up to 32 processor cores, while 64‑bit versions can support up to 256 processor cores.

PCs with multiple processors (CPUs):
Commercial servers, workstations, and other high-end PCs may have more than one physical processor.Windows 7 Professional, Enterprise, and Ultimate allow for two physical processors, providing the best performance on these computers. Windows 7 Starter, Home Basic, and Home Premium will recognize only one physical processor.

Link to system requirements: http://windows.microsoft.com/systemrequirements

 

Hope this helps


Chris.H
Microsoft Answers Support Engineer
Visit our Microsoft Answers Feedback Forum and let us know what you think.
Wydnas
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Wydnas replied on

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Well that's a bit of a pain as this has not been made clear at all in the general supporting promo documentation, and I bought Home Premium under the imnpression that it did support 2x physical CPUs.  Nor is it made clear on the packaging as I checked that before opening.

No wonder I can't see my second processor in my Dual Xeon rig. 

I think that perhaps MS should put this out there in an easily findable advisory, as at the price that I paid for Win7 Home  Premium it was a compelling upgrade, but at double the price just to support the extra processor I would have just continued with my XP, especially as many of my drivers will not work with 7, so much of my activity would be in a Virtualized XP running on 7.

OK what are my options.  And can you re-confirm that what you stated above is true.

Yours

A rather irritated user.
Spawn_SP
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Spawn_SP replied on

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Well that's a bit of a pain as this has not been made clear at all in the general supporting promo documentation, and I bought Home Premium under the imnpression that it did support 2x physical CPUs.  Nor is it made clear on the packaging as I checked that before opening.

No wonder I can't see my second processor in my Dual Xeon rig. 

I think that perhaps MS should put this out there in an easily findable advisory, as at the price that I paid for Win7 Home  Premium it was a compelling upgrade, but at double the price just to support the extra processor I would have just continued with my XP, especially as many of my drivers will not work with 7, so much of my activity would be in a Virtualized XP running on 7.

OK what are my options.  And can you re-confirm that what you stated above is true.

Yours

A rather irritated user.
I'm exactly on the same situation. I discovered that dual physical CPU limitation ONCE Windows 7 Home Premium was installed, and checked on the activity monitor that one CPU was missing.
I think Microsoft should make this limitation more clear on the product comparison website, as for now it says nothing about this.
blackbird5
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blackbird5 replied on

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Same issue - just installed it to find only one of 2 x dual core processors are supported.

The Home Premium licence agreement says:

Section 2:
c.    Licensed Computer. You may use the software on up to two processors on the licensed computer at one time. Unless otherwise provided in these license terms, you may not use the software on any other computer.

According to the definition of processor by Chris H. we should be able to use both.

Can I get a refund or free upgrade?  Better still, Microsoft should be offering a patch or be more open about this restriction.

Dissatisfied user.
blackbird5
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blackbird5 replied on

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Hello Dr.Technical,

Thank you for visiting the Microsoft Answers Community.

PCs with multi-core processors:
Windows 7 was designed to work with today's multi-core processors. All 32-bit versions of Windows 7 can support up to 32 processor cores, while 64‑bit versions can support up to 256 processor cores.

PCs with multiple processors (CPUs):
Commercial servers, workstations, and other high-end PCs may have more than one physical processor.Windows 7 Professional, Enterprise, and Ultimate allow for two physical processors, providing the best performance on these computers. Windows 7 Starter, Home Basic, and Home Premium will recognize only one physical processor.

 

Hope this helps


Chris.H
Microsoft Answers Support Engineer
Visit our Microsoft Answers Feedback Forum and let us know what you think.
Chris H.  Where does this information come from?  What is the official Microsoft documentation.  I only ask because it differs from the licence agreement for home premium.

Thanks

tomthebomb024
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tomthebomb024 replied on

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Why would you use a limited functionality os like home premium on a high end workstation with multiple physical processors? Why would you have a dual Xeon rig running anything but a server operating system?
DaveDahl
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DaveDahl replied on
I am in the same situation, NO documentation anywhere before I purchased Win 7 Home Premium(Full even though I could have upgraded from one of my Win XP 64 Pro Copies) and to find out my second CPU is not supported was very disappointing indeed.  Will Microsoft be addressing this complete mismanaged situation.  Providing the End User with all information for their needs should be a matter of fact considering their shear size of organisation.  Why Should I throw away my old Hardware and buy a new Dual Core system to run Win7 HP for simply playing movies from iTunes.  Has Microsoft never heard of protection of investment, this needs to be addressed ASAP, Yours Very Dissatisfied Customer
Mike Hall MVP
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Mike Hall MVP replied on

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"DaveDahl" wrote in message news:2d843477-f3c8-4a83-9dc8-ae089173bcba...
I am in the same situation, NO documentation anywhere before I purchased Win 7 Home Premium(Full even though I could have upgraded from one of my Win XP 64 Pro Copies) and to find out my second CPU is not supported was very disappointing indeed.  Will Microsoft be addressing this complete mismanaged situation.  Providing the End User with all information for their needs should be a matter of fact considering their shear size of organisation.  Why Should I throw away my old Hardware and buy a new Dual Core system to run Win7 HP for simply playing movies from iTunes.  Has Microsoft never heard of protection of investment, this needs to be addressed ASAP, Yours Very Dissatisfied Customer

'Home' versions of Windows have never supported dual CPU's. Only Pro versions can see and use two physical processors. Microsoft have not mismanaged anything.
 
 

--

Mike Hall - MVP Windows Experience
http://msmvps.com/blogs/mikehall/

Mike Hall MVP - Windows Desktop Experience http://msmvps.com/blogs/mikehall/
Windows 8.1 Pro 64-bit - Start8
Location - SWO, Canada
DaveDahl
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DaveDahl replied on

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You must be an experienced guy in this matter Mike, the vast majority are not. Publish the limitations and give the public the ability to make an educated choice what to buy. Some people dont know the history of Microsoft Operating Systems or computers for that matter, so dont expect that, we just ask for the ability to make an informed decision
Beginner - please keep answ...
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Beginner - please keep answ... replied on

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Hi Chris H,

My Toshiba laptop has Windows Home Premium SP1 and a Single Core Processor (an AMD Sempron SI-42). My computer/system is 32 bit not 64 bit.

I am thinking of changing the processor for a Dual Core Processor (an AMD Turion64 X2 RM-72).

I would like to ask you this question:

Will Windows Home Premium SP1 recognise and work with a Dual Core Processor or not?

Thank you for your help.