I've built myself a new computer. Basic specs are as follows:
Q9400 Quad Core
4GB DDR3 RAM
512MB 9500GT Graphics
Since I have a 64-bit CPU and 4 GB of RAM I figured that I would try to use XP x64 edition. I have access to both that and the regular 32-bit edition.
I've installed the x64 edition and found drivers for most of my hardware. However, some drivers (such as for my scanner) aren't available for x64. Furthermore, some programs act a bit quirky. For example, a context menu item will be missing because 64-bit explorer can't load 32-bit DLL's. Additionally, I don't like the fact that I have to download some software from third parties (i.e. TweakUI 64-bit) and almost no software that I use on a regular basis is available in a true 64-bit edition. Finally, I am a bit confused about the actual state of x64 with MS. Are they supporting it? Why no SP3?
My main question is should I stay with x64 or go back to 32-bit? Most of my search results tell me to go back to 32-bit but many of those are forum posts from 2004-2006. Has x64 XP become more mainstream since then or will I continue to have to deal with "quirks" like I do now? This computer was built to serve as my main desktop for programming, research, etc. so I don't want to waste too much time getting the actual OS/software working, at least in Windows (x64 Linux though...)
My main concern with 32-bit XP is can I make use of my full 4GB of RAM without any ugly hacks?
Thanks in advance.