[techbooks] REVIEW: "Inside the Windows 95 File System", Stan Mitchell
- BKIW95FS.RVW 981121
"Inside the Windows 95 File System", Stan Mitchell, 1997,
%A Stan Mitchell
%C 103 Morris Street, Suite A, Sebastopol, CA 95472
%I O'Reilly & Associates, Inc.
%O U$32.95/C$46.95 800-998-9938 fax: 707-829-0104 nuts@...
%P 378 p. + diskette
%T "Inside the Windows 95 File System"
Data recovery people might be just a tad disappointed. This is not
actually about the physical file system of sectors and tracks per se,
but about file system management inside Win95. The file system that
the user or application sees may be remarkably different from any
physical device layout, and may, in fact, partake of a number of
Chapter one's title of "From IFSMgr to the Internet" is not exactly
hype, and works on two levels. The first is an explanation of the
Installable File System Manager and its provision for management of
local storage, resources access by packet requests over a network, and
resources dealt with as (byte) serial data. (Hmmmm. Is Microsoft
doing a UNIX on us, and seeing absolutely everything as a file?) The
second is a demonstration run with the author's own (and provided)
MultiMon utility in order to learn what we can about file system
activity from a session with an Internet browser.
Chapter two gives us some more sample sessions, but with strictly
limited programs for more precise review of specific calls. Using
MultiMon to trace the boot process, and the various ways IFSMgr is
used by different types of applications, is covered in chapter three.
File system APIs (Applications Programming Interfaces) are detailed in
chapter four for Win32, KERNEL32, and Win16. Chapter five looks at
the interrupts used by DOS.
Chapter six starts to looks at the installable parts of the file
system, the File System Drivers (FSDs) and the requests that can be
dispatched to them. Monitoring of file activity, and some more parts
of MultiMon, are in chapter seven. The structure and characteristics
of FSDs are detailed in chapter eight, which also gives a sample
driver that can be used to drive a monochrome monitor. Chapter nine
looks at the VFAT system, including some structural details on FAT32.
Virtual memory in Win95 (and the reason its swap file is not a swap
file) is examined in chapter ten. Caching is reviewed in chapter
eleven. A survey of IFSMgr services, and some of the things the
documentation doesn't tell you, is included in chapter twelve.
Chapter thirteen talks about the network client software, with some
comments on the proposed Common Internet File System (CIFS). Chapter
fourteen looks to the future, and particularly to the relevant aspects
of the Windows NT file system. Appendices provide more documentation
on MultiMon, IFSMgr data structures, IFS development aids, and a
This si definitely a programming, rather than system support or
administration, manual, although some of the functions could be useful
in diagnosing problems. Those who are working on Win9x applications
that make extensive use of the file system will undoubtedly find much
copyright Robert M. Slade, 1998 BKIW95FS.RVW 981121
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