Drivers

About Microsoft Windows Display Driver


Starting with the Windows Vista release, Microsoft introduced the Windows Display Driver to drive the video cards installed in the computer.

It tended to be different from the previous systems in that better quality graphics could be delivered on a real-time basis.

The display was much more stable, with fewer instances of crashes occurring with the use of the display driver model. 

It was possible to run the applications much faster and cleaner with the new display driver.  The desktop became more functional than previously thought possible with prior systems. 

The desktop window manager became all the more powerful with the release of Windows display driver, and it could be seen in a much better looking as well as a more functional system.

Features enabled by the Windows Display Driver

Better graphics: Using virtualized video memory, it became possible to render some of the most powerful graphics possible. By virtualization, it was possible to mask out the memory requirements of applications working simultaneously, from each other.

This would mean a more individualized approach to the whole model that allowed excessive data to be moved to the RAM or the disk from the video card.

 Scheduling: Timely running of applications got the better with the display driver model.  The commands were stored in a queue, and the critical phases could bypass the system and seek more immediate action.

Thus it became possible for critical features to be run in proper sequence and speed. This action led to a better and more responsive computer most of the time.

 The 3D effect: One of the features with Windows releases after the vista version was the near-perfect 3D imaging possible on the systems. This is one of the primary reasons why the graphics tended to be much more interactive and alive to the inputs.  It became possible as the Direct 3D surfaces could be shared across processes. 

Fault tolerance: With the Windows Display Driver, it became possible to build a much more fault-tolerant system than ever attempted before. The graphics stack can restart the driver, and any hardware fault can be intercepted, and the graphics card reset.

This feature would be evident from the manner the graphics systems came to be seen as more robust after the release of the version vista with Windows.

Limitations of the Windows Display Driver

It is to be noted that the new driver model needed the support of Shader Model 2.0 or higher.  With close to 98% of the Windows operating system supporting the display driver model, it was as though this drawback did not get to be too critical.

The system could function without the over-reliance on the Shader files most of the time. With the release version 1.0, it was not possible to support multiple drivers on the same motherboard.

This lacuna was removed with the release of version 1.1 that was the debugged version of the Windows Display Driver Model

Most people, when they first started using Windows vista release, were quick to point out that it had very impressive graphics rendering.  This was primarily possible with the use of the Windows Display Driver Model.

The release version 1.1 removed the typical bugs encountered with the 1.0 version and meant a much smoother rendering of the display


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