Peer Support, Expert Assistance
Looking for some help developing Windows system software? Maybe somebody to answer a question about WDF? Need a forum to ask questions about the WDK (Windows Driver Kit) or passing the WHQL/HLK tests? Someone who can fill you in about a specific problem you’re having developing a File System Minifilter? OSR’s Developer Community hosts three forums that you should be aware of, where you can get answers from the experts. Why do we do it? Well, we started out by benefiting from email exchanges in the Compuserve forums years ago…we’re just trying to keep that spirit alive today.
Who asks and answers questions in the Community? Well, people like you, for one. In addition, we’re fortunate to have several highly experienced driver devs from around the world, including several devs from Microsoft, lend their expert assistance. And, of course, the team from OSR also contributes whenever possible.
You may notice that we refer to these forums as “the Community”, “the forums” and also frequently as “the lists”… The latter of these is because, for about 20 years, the forums were discussion mailing lists (first on ListServ and then on Lyris). See the topic “List History”, below, if you’d like to learn more about how we got here.
This forum is dedicated to the development of drivers for the Windows family of operating systems. Looking for Win32 or user-mode peer support? Not here. But if you’ve got a design, implementation or support issue with a Windows kernel-mode driver, this is the place to be. Inhabited by newbies, seasoned veterans, and even the Microsoft developers… Take the opportunity to learn from your peers to get over that particular development hump.
Developing file systems or file system minifilters? This is the place for your questions. There’s enough info posted here that it’s a place you should probably check regularly for info. Really…you can’t afford not to partake of the information that is exchanged in this list.
Having trouble debugging a particularly thorny issue?? Do you find it impossible to make WinDbg do what you want?? This is the list for your issues.
Visit the Community at: https://community.osr.com
Community Forum/List History
Back in early history, NTDEV and NTFSD were founded by Atria Software as listserv mailing lists. Artria were the folks who brought the ClearCase version control system to the world, which was the very first non-Microsoft developed NT file system. The Lists grew, as did Atria’s business. At the same time OSR’s dedication to working with the community became evident. As a result, Atria offered stewardship of the Lists to OSR.
When we brought the Lists in-house here at OSR, we hosted them using Lyris ListManager. This was a commercial super-efficient discussion list email system, and we hosted it on a dedicated server in OSR’s server room. We got a T1 connection (blazingly fast at the time, at 1.544Mbps… and more than a little expensive at more than $3K/month) to support the lists.
Several years later, OSR Online was invented and as part of our initiative to create “a home page for driver developers” we custom crafted the forum-style front end interface to the Lists that you see today. We licensed the “look and feel” and layout code from vBulletin, which — at the time — was the gold standard for forum interfaces. The lists were all modern and fancy. We were very proud. We leased a second T1 and bonded it to the first yielding 3Mbps throughput (WOW!), which we primarily dedicated to the Lists. And we added a WINDBG list to the venerable NTDEV and NTFSD.
Fast forward about 15 years, to September 2018. We were still hosting the Lists locally on Lyris, in the OSR Server Room. The Lists (and OSR Online) were the only remaining services we host locally, having moved the rest of our operations To The Cloud. The interface that seemed to us so exciting years ago looks old and clunky and (quite frankly) depressing and embarrassing, and the server software (Lyris, SQL, and the rest) was tired, out of date, and no longer supportable.
So… on 19 September 2018, we moved “the lists” to a new home, as hosted forums, at community.osr.com, and they’ve happily been there ever since. Check it out! Ask your questions, and let us know how you like it.