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The Book of Xen by Luke S. Crawford, Chris Takemura

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Paravirtualized Drivers for Windows

As we've already mentioned (several times), HVM is somewhat slower than paravirtualization. Partially this is because of the need to virtualize memory access; however, this overhead is minimal compared with emulated I/O and its attendant context switches. (See Chapter 12 for mind-numbing detail.)

You can address many of the speed issues related to HVM by swapping the emulated devices for paravirtualized devices after the install process completes. These devices will improve I/O speeds dramatically; however, Windows driver support is lacking. There are two options: proprietary and expensive drivers, or free and unfinished ones.

Proprietary Windows PVM Drivers

Three companies have so far provided Windows drivers ...

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