Device drivers are specialised software that allow hardware plugged into a PC to communicate with the operating system.

 

Operating systems provide a large collection of drivers for common device types such as USB mass storage equipment or webcams. We offer to develop your embedded device to use one of these drivers, reducing the need for more expensive, customised software.

 

Starting from the Windows 2000 version of the Windows Driver Kit, Microsoft have implemented a new driver framework called Windows Driver Foundation (WDF), enabling drivers to be developed quicker and with more ease than previous models.

 

The WDF allows drivers to be developed in two modes – Kernel Mode and User Mode.

 

User Mode drivers have the advantage of running outside the Windows Kernel, removing the possibility of bugs in the driver crashing the operating system, and Kernel Mode drivers are suited towards devices requiring high data throughput and/or low latency.

 

As well as the throughput and latency advantages, Kernel Mode drivers also support more device types than their User Mode counterparts.