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Network Infrastructure Improvements

The Windows Vista® enhancements to the Windows network infrastructure increase the security, reliability and efficiency of the network and provide a better platform for developers to build upon. Windows Vista provides enhanced support through the following new features and technologies.

Network Stack Improvements

The Windows Vista TCP/IP and HTTP stacks have been re-architected and re-implemented for improved performance, reliability, security, and extensibility. Support has been added or greatly improved for the IPv6 (scheduled for beta 2), IPSec, IDN, and RSS protocols. Kernel-mode access greatly improves the performance of the HTTP and Windows Sockets protocols. Significant improvements have also been made in the areas of wireless networking, quality of service (QOS), and Windows Firewall.

Network Diagnostics Framework (NDF)

NDF, an extension of the Windows Diagnostics Infrastructure (WDI), monitors the health of the Windows Vista network subsystem. With NDF, ill-behaving network components can be automatically identified, diagnosed, reported, and often corrected. ISVs developing network components should add NDF functionality.

Windows Filtering Platform (WFP)

WFP is a new modular, more efficient architecture for interfacing with the Windows Vista TCP/IP stack. WFP introduces a new, straightforward development model for ISV's network extensions and utilities, such as firewalls, new protocols, and stack inspection tools. The use of WFP is expected to eliminate many of the conflicts between ISV network products seen in earlier versions of Windows.

Network API Improvements

The WinINet, WinHTTP, and Winsock Layered Service Provider (LSP) APIs have also been updated. In .NET Framework 3.0, extensive network support has been added to the System.Net* namespaces.

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