A CDE Definition
(Virtual Device Driver) A special type of Windows driver that allows Windows to perform functions that cannot be done by applications communicating with Windows in the normal manner. VxDs run at the most privileged CPU mode (ring 0) and allow low-level interaction with the hardware and internal Windows functions, such as memory management. For example, the operating system kernel is a VxD. See kernel.
The nucleus of an operating system. It is the closest part to the machine level and may activate the hardware directly or interface to another software layer that drives the hardware. The kernel orchestrates the entire operation of the computer by slicing time for each system function and each application as well as managing all the computer's resources. It typically resides in memory at all times. See microkernel, monolithic kernel, kernel space and kernel panic.
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