Windows Driver Model

About the Microsoft Windows Driver Model

The Windows Driver Model (WDM) was introduced to unify driver models across all versions of windows including Windows 98 and Windows 2000 and later. WDM drivers are IRP (I/O Request Packet) centric, using an in-memory packet structure to represent the I/O request on behalf of the issuing application. The Windows Driver Model uses a layered driver architecture to allow driver developers the ability to augment functionality of existing device drivers in the system. The Windows Driver Model exposes power managment and Plug and Play (PnP) interfaces, allowing driver developers to selectively control how their devices consume power, and interact with the rest of the system. The Kernel Mode Driver Framework encapsulates much of WDM, often making it easier to write WDM drivers. However, a solid understanding of how WDM works is extreamly useful when implementing and especially debugging non-trival windows device drivers.

An excellent book on the Windows Driver Model is Walter Oney's Programming the Microsoft Windows Driver Model book. Though a few years old, much of it is still applicable to todays windows driver developer.



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