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Old 11-22-2006, 05:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default difference in working between inf and exe files

Hello

Do both .inf and .exe files work in the same way. in the sense that they are both executables?


just found a good article whcih describes inf files


http://www.wd-3.com/archive/InfFiles.htm
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Old 11-22-2006, 06:59 PM   #2 (permalink)
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No, they are not. .INF files are configuration files, in essence, while .exe (etc) are executable.

Very neat article Thanks for the link!
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Old 11-25-2006, 02:26 PM   #3 (permalink)
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thanks for the reply penfold

after going through the article, i get the impression that inf files provide instructions to the operating system installer(?) for the installation of drivers. i thought the config files are all in the registry now with the excepton of a few .config files?
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Old 11-25-2006, 08:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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You are correct. Almost all .inf files are now in the registry. But some are located within .exe packages as well. That is how drivers are packed. The .inf files allow for the OS to use the drivers and the hardware they control.

I used .inf files a lot when in Vista since the early stages of Vista that was the only way you could get a driver to work. From extracting the .exe and using the .inf file.
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Old 11-26-2006, 08:02 AM   #5 (permalink)
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thanks for the reply

i am a bit confiused, i thought inf files are just used when you install a drive, it provides instructions to the OS for installation of the driver. once that is done, there is no need for the inf file. so if you are startig up your OS the inf file is not used at all.

the settings for the prgrams and the drivers are in the registry. so my understanding is that the registry just acts as a respository of the settings, whereas the inf file provides instructions for the installation of the drivers, is my understanding correct?
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Old 11-26-2006, 01:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
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A .inf file is used for information. So it can contain instructions on install but it also can contain more than just that. Like information on how the device works or anything to that nature.

The Registry is more than just a respository. It is the command center. If anything goes wrong with the registry the whole OS can go down. That is why Windows is so cautious when it comes to registry altering.

You will notice that if you mess with the registry at all, it is at your own will. No one suggests you do it since one wrong move you take down Windows.

So the resistry is the command center. It contains all the info on how the OS and the devices are to work together.
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Old 12-02-2006, 01:25 PM   #7 (permalink)
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makes sense
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