New for Bus and Port Drivers

Starting with Windows 8, several new driver-support features are available for buses and ports. These features include driver support for USB 3.0, and extensions to the Kernel-Mode Driver Framework to support GPIO controllers, simple peripheral bus (SPB) controllers, and serial controllers.

The following sections describe the new features for bus and port drivers.

GPIO Framework Extension

A GPIO controller configures a set of GPIO pins to function as low-bandwidth data I/O channels, device-select outputs, or interrupt-request inputs. The GPIO framework extension (GpioClx) in Windows 8 simplifies the task of writing a GPIO controller driver by performing many of the tasks that are common to all GPIO controller drivers. The hardware vendor for the GPIO controller supplies a driver that communicates with GpioClx and that performs all hardware-specific driver tasks for the GPIO controller. For more information, see General-Purpose I/O (GPIO) Drivers.

The GpioClx device driver interface (DDI) has changed. Three new event callback functions and a number of new structures have been added. A new I/O control code (IOCTL) has been added to the I/O request interface.

Serial Framework Extension

A serial controller accesses peripheral devices that are connected to serial ports on a UART, and uses the RS-232 serial communications protocol to communicate with these devices. The serial framework extension (SerCx) in Windows 8 simplifies the task of writing a serial controller driver by performing many of the tasks that are common to all serial controller drivers. The hardware vendor for the serial controller supplies a driver that communicates with SerCx and that performs all hardware-specific driver tasks for the serial controller. To ensure compatibility with drivers and applications written for previous versions of Windows, the system-supplied Serial.sys driver continues to manage the named serial ports (COM1, COM2, and so on) on PCs. For more information, see Extension-Based Serial Controller Driver Design Guide.

SPB Framework Extension

An SPB controller accesses peripheral devices that are connected to a simple peripheral bus, such as I²C or SPI. These buses are used in hardware platforms that operate on low power and that require low-pin-count connections to devices. The SPB framework extension (SpbCx) in Windows 8 simplifies the task of writing an SPB controller driver by performing many of the tasks that are common to all SPB controller drivers. The hardware vendor for the SPB controller supplies a driver that communicates with SpbCx and that performs all hardware-specific driver tasks for the SPB controller. For more information, see Simple Peripheral Bus (SPB) Drivers.

The SPB driver design guide has been expanded to provide more help to developers of drivers for peripheral devices that are connected to simple peripheral buses.

USB

For information about new features and improvements in Universal Serial Bus (USB) in Windows 8, see these topics:

 

 

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