Printer Drivers Running in “Kernel Mode” Cause Many
Windows NT printer drivers, which run in “kernel mode”, introduce a high risk for the stability
of the system if the driver is not really stable and well-tested. And there are a lot of bad drivers out
there! Especially notorious is the example of the PCL printer driver that had an additional sound module
running to notify users via soundcard of their finished jobs. Do I need to say that this one was also reliably
causing “blue screens of death” on a regular basis?
PostScript drivers are generally well-tested. They are not known to cause any problems, even though they also
run in kernel mode. This might be because until now there have been only two different PostScript drivers: the
one from Adobe and the one from Microsoft. Both are well-tested and are as stable as you can imagine on
Windows. The CUPS driver is derived from the Microsoft one.