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Windows® Internals, Sixth Edition, Part 2 by David A. Solomon Mark E. Russinovich and Alex Ionescu

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Conclusion

The I/O system defines the model of I/O processing on Windows and performs functions that are common to or required by more than one driver. Its chief responsibility is to create IRPs representing I/O requests and to shepherd the packets through various drivers, returning results to the caller when an I/O is complete. The I/O manager locates various drivers and devices by using I/O system objects, including driver and device objects. Internally, the Windows I/O system operates asynchronously to achieve high performance and provides both synchronous and asynchronous I/O capabilities to user-mode applications.

Device drivers include not only traditional hardware device drivers but also file system, network, and layered filter drivers. ...

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