AMD Drops 32-Bit Support for Radeon Drivers

Credit: AMDCredit: AMD

AMD has discontinued driver support for 32-bit operating systems. The Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.9.3 WHQL driver was the last 32-bit driver of its kind from AMD. The change is effective immediately and will affect Microsoft operating systems, such as Windows 10 and Windows 7, as well as Linux distributions in the likes of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), CentOS, Ubuntu and SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop (SLED).

Frankly, it's surprising it took AMD this much time to decide to stop providing 32-bit drivers for its Radeon suite. Rival graphics card manufacturer Nvidia stopped supporting 32-bit operating systems with its GeForce graphics driver last year. Nevertheless, AMD's move probably won't affect a huge portion of gaming population, since the chances of finding a gamer using a 32-bit operating system in 2018 is pretty slim. According to the latest edition of Steam's Hardware & Software Survey, 0.29 percent of its users are on a 32-bit version of Windows 10, 1.63 percent are on Windows 7 and 0.13 percent use Windows XP. The percentage is slowly decreasing every month as more and more users are transitioning over to a 64-bit operating system.

Note, 32-bit operating system owners don't have to upgrade to a 64-bit operating system. They can continue to use the Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.9.3 WHQL driver. But being stuck on an aging driver means they will lose out on future game optimizations and features, bug and security fixes and performance enhancements. Users don't have to shell out a lot of money for Windows 10 or Windows 7 64-bit licenses. The task of backing up and reinstalling everything from scratch might seem like a drag, but it's a one-time thing, and your graphics card will thank you for it.

21 comments
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  • AgentLozen
    Will the next generation Vega chips still run on the Vega 64 drivers?
  • richardvday
    I doubt that very much, Node shrink even if otherwise its the same will require new drivers to be recognized. Probably
  • mikewinddale
    I had no idea that AMD was still supporting 32-bit OSes. I have a 5 year old laptop with an AMD A10-5750M APU with an integrated Radeon HD8650G, and AMD halted driver support about a year or two ago.

    Meanwhile, all versions of Windows have come in a 64-bit version since Windows XP Professional x64 in 2005.

    So AMD has been supporting 13 year old operating systems all this time, but they don't support 5 year old GPUs? That seems really weird to me.