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Microsoft to move graphics outside OS kernel

Discussion in 'News' started by tripwire45, Dec 14, 2005.

  1. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster


    Microsoft to move graphics outside OS kernel

    Microsoft will move the graphics for its next version of Windows outside of the operating system's kernel to improve reliability, the software giant has told Techworld. Vista's graphics subsystem, codenamed Avalon and formally known as the Windows Presentation Foundation, will be pulled out the kernel because many lock-ups are the result of the GUI freezing, Microsoft infrastructure architect Giovanni Marchetti told us exclusively yesterday. The company has already announced to developers that most drivers, including graphics, will run in user mode - which means that they don't get access to the privileged kernel mode (or Ring 0). At this level, a process can do anything it likes, including overwriting memory that doesn't belong to it.

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    1. Bluerinse
      Interesting stuff there James as usual. Nice find.
    2. hbroomhall
      Er - but this is how it *used* to be - back in the day (NT 3.5 or thereabouts)!

      Performance was so bad that the graphics was moved to kernal.

      Wonder what will happen to the performance this time around.

    3. Bluerinse
      According to the article Harry, they are relying on modern graphic card design to overcome the performance issues of yesteryear. We shall see, but I would expect a shift up in the minimum hardware specs for video cards.
    4. Fergal1982
      very possibly. but this also reduces security issues too. if the GUI runs in user mode, then it will (presumably) have permissions set by that user, and so reduces the risk of it being used to hack.

      Of course even what i said is utter shite, having it not run as part of the kernel achieves a similar end.

      Good to see that microsoft are actually pulling their finger out and thinking about things. Its not perfect, but its a start.


      EDIT: Doh. should really read the whole article before commenting instead of just skimming, since thats essentially what the article says.

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