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G8BPQ User Mode Virtual Serial Port Driver

NB. This driver only works on Windows 2000 and above.

This Driver, BPQVirtualSerial.sys, provides emulated(virtual) COM ports which are used by various BPQ32 components to link to applications that expect to see a real COM port.

Note that BPQ32 now includes two Virtual COM Drivers, this one and BPQVirtualCOM.sys. This is a User Mode Driver (ie runs as an application, not as part of the operating system). BPQVirtualCOM.sys is a Kernel Mode Driver (ie runs as part of the operating system). Each has its advantages and disadvantages:

BPQVirtualSerial.sys:

Pros:
Works on 64 bit versions of Windows.
Devices show up in Device Manager.
Cons:
Cannot be monitored by Portmon.


BPQVirtualCOM.sys

Pros:
Ports can be monitored using Portmon.
Cons:
Doesn't work on 64 bit versions of Windows. (64 bit Kernal Drivers have to be signed, and that process costs quite a lot).
Devices don't show up in Device Manager.


The installation and configuration process is also different, but neither is obviously (at least to me!) better or worse.

The driver is installed using the standard "Add New Hardware" feature.

Note that there are separate versions for 32bit and 64bit Windows, in the VCOM32 and VCOM64 subdirectories - make sure you install the right one.

For Installation on Windows XP, see intructions here.
For Installation on Windows 7, see intructions here.


The port will be installed with the next available COM port number. If necessary, this can be changed via the device properties page. Some applications, especially older ones, only support a limited range of COM port numbers.

John Wiseman G8BPQ
November 2011