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Windows System Programming, Fourth Edition by Johnson M. Hart

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Chapter 14. Asynchronous Input/Output and Completion Ports

Input and output are inherently slow compared with other processing due to factors such as the following:

• Delays caused by track and sector seek time on random access devices, such as disks

• Delays caused by the relatively slow data transfer rate between a physical device and system memory

• Delays in network data transfer using file servers, storage area networks, and so on

All I/O in previous examples has been thread-synchronous, so that the entire thread waits until the I/O operation completes.

This chapter shows how a thread can continue without waiting for an operation to complete—that is, threads can perform asynchronous I/O. Examples illustrate the different techniques available ...

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