Hardware Dev Center

PnP Driver's Unload Routine

A PnP driver must have an Unload routine that removes any driver-specific resources, such as memory, threads, and events, that are created by the DriverEntry routine. If there are no driver-specific resources to remove, the driver must still have an Unload routine but it can simply return.

A driver's Unload routine can be called at any time after all the driver's devices have been removed. The PnP manager calls a driver's Unload routine in the context of a system thread at IRQL = PASSIVE_LEVEL.

PnP drivers free device-specific resources and device objects in response to PnP device-removal IRPs. The PnP manager sends these IRPs on behalf of each PnP device it enumerates as well as any root-enumerated legacy devices a driver reports using IoReportDetectedDevice.

Consequently, the Unload routines of PnP drivers are usually simple, often consisting only of a return statement. However, if the driver allocated any driver-wide resources in its DriverEntry routine, it must deallocate those resources in its Unload routine unless it has already done so. In general, the process of unloading a PnP driver is a synchronous operation.

The I/O manager frees the driver object and any driver object extension that the driver allocated using IoAllocateDriverObjectExtension.



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