Driver Packages and Drivers- Shall We Disambiguate?

MSDN Logo This was originally a post by Bob Kjelgaard on his MSDN Blog Trouble Ahead- Trouble Behind.   I’m going to repost it here, as it looks like the original content has been removed.
This copy was captured by the Google Cache as it appeared on 31 Jan 2010 21:56:34 GMT.


So you want to know how to sign your driver, eh?  Let us step aside and improve our thinking for a moment, so we can be smarter about what we are asking for- because I don’t think it’s the driver you actually want to sign…

What is a Driver Package?

At a minimum. it is ALL of the files that should be present to make sure your device’s driver and all associated support software installs, begins working, and continues to work when it is plugged in:

  • The driver binaries, including any coinstallers, or other support binaries.
  • The INF file, which tells the OS how to install the “driver” and hook all those things together properly.

You may want more than that in the package- perhaps you have useful value-added utilities to install that you also want on the disk.  Microsoft recommended this in the WinHec 2008 presentation “Creating Deployable Driver Packages for Windows”  (non-Microsoft link)

How do I know what needs to be in the package?

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