Windows 10: This app can’t run on your PC – Problem Fix

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Often people get confused about whether to install Windows 10 32 bit version or 64 bit edition on their PC.  They end up installing 32-bit (x86) version of Windows on a 64-bit (x64) CPU or machine. The installation works fine on Computer but it does not permit execution of programs that require 64-bit edition. Windows 10 start giving errors such as “This app can’t run on your PC”.

Windows error
Windows 10 error showing, “This app can’t run on your PC”

Important information:

64 bit – It can run 64 bit programs smoothly and is backward compatible with 32 bit applications.

32 bit – It can only run 32 bit programs and won’t allow execution beyond that. But it can run 16 bit DOS 3.1 programs. Also, it does not support RAM more than 2 GB.

How do I determine if my CPU hardware supports 64 bit Windows:

1. Download and install CPU-Z program. It is a program that shows detailed information about your CPU, Ram, Motherboard and Graphic card all in one place. Every PC user must have it.

2. After installation, Run CPU-Z from programs, if your User Access Control warns you, click Yes. It will then scan your PC for a few seconds then it show detailed specifications of your machine.

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CPU-Z

3. If you see Instruction set like any of this, AMD64, x86-x64 or EM64T. Congratulations, your system is compatible with 64-bit operating system instructions. You can proceed with installation of new OS without any worry.

How to Upgrade Windows 10 32-bit to 64-bit:

Unfortunately, there is no upgrade tool or software that can change your Operating System instruction set. You will have to backup your data, format your drives and initiate a clean install of Windows 10 64-bit on your PC. You can easily create Windows 10 64-bit Bootable USB or DVD for clean installation. This process will take a while as you’ll have to download the required edition from Microsoft website.

Selecting Window 10 Edition
Selecting the Windows 10 edition, language and architecture
  • Once you create bootable media, insert USD/DVD on your Computer.
  • Perform a machine restart.
  • Access BIOS by Pressing DEL or F12 key (It varies on every motherboard)
  • Set boot device to USB or DVD whichever you made earlier.
  • Press F10 to save changes and exit, your PC will reboot.
  • It will ask you to “Press any key to boot from USB….“, Do it.
  • Windows Setup will begin, select your partition on which you want to install Windows.
  • After the installation is done, Microsoft will automatically activate your Windows 10 64-bit license assuming you previously had 32-bit OS installed. Make sure you have active Internet Connection during the process.

10 COMMENTS

  1. Does not work always. Had 7 Pro x86… upgraded to 10 and activated…. formatted drive, installed 10 Pro x64 (same disk used to upgrade in the x86 environment) . No activation, m$ support said to install 7 x64, upgrade / activate / install 10 x64.

    to save time, image your failed-to-activate 10 x64, install 7, activate, install 10 & verify activation, then image drive with previous fresh 10 install. BAM ! activated.
    Support will not activate for you if you received the “free” upgrade… they will if you PAY for it tho!

  2. HAH! The program I’m trying to run IS CPU-Z, and I am running 64bit windows 10.
    Cpu-z was working fine 2 days ago, and then a widnows update and BAM, it can’t run -.-

  3. I get this error trying to run executable files that worked on Windows 9x long before 64 bit operating systems existed, and more recently worked on my Windows 7 computer with 64 bits, so Windows 10 is definitely not fully backward compatible with 32 bit applications.

  4. My system is 64 bit compatible and I already have Win 10 32bit loaded. I created and ISO and USB of the 64bit version. When I reboot, I receive a brief message that it is loading set up, but then switches and boots from hard drive. Does the same when I boot from USB. When I tried to execute the setup.exe directly, I get this message: “This app can’t be run on your PC”. Suggestions appreciated.

  5. I am already running a 64 bit windows 10 for the last 6 months. Today I tried to download and install the new browser – Vivaldi 1-. On trying to install as Admin – I got a message that This app can nogt run on this PC. I

  6. I had exactly the same problem as H P Agrawal, after downloading the Vivaldi installer with Chrome (i.e. 64 bit Windows 10, “this app can’t run on this pc”). Then I downloaded the Vivaldi installer with Firefox, and the installer worked fine — weird, but useful to know…

  7. Do a profile recreation. Create a new profile, migrate data and delete the old profile as it is corrupt.

  8. I’m getting this error from trying to install Minecraft (a 32-bit program) on Windows 8.1 64-bit (a 64-bit OS, obviously). I don’t think this “fix” is legit.

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