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Microsoft® Windows® Internals: Microsoft Windows Server™ 2003, Windows XP, and Windows 2000, 4th Edition by David A. Solomon, Mark E. Russinovich

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NDIS Drivers

When a protocol driver wants to read or write messages formatted in its protocol's format from or to the network, the driver must do so using a network adapter. Because expecting protocol drivers to understand the nuances of every network adapter on the market (proprietary network adapters number in the thousands) isn't feasible, network adapter vendors provide device drivers that can take network messages and transmit them via the vendors' proprietary hardware. In 1989, Microsoft and 3Com jointly developed the Network Driver Interface Specification (NDIS), which lets protocol drivers communicate with network adapter drivers in a device-independent manner. Network adapter drivers that conform to NDIS are called NDIS drivers or NDIS ...

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