user mode

Definition of user mode in The Network Encyclopedia.

What is User Mode?

User Mode is a restricted mode of operation for processes in Microsoft Windows NT and Windows 2000. User mode processes have lower priority and fewer privileges than kernel mode processes. User mode processes include components of the operating system that directly support user applications and the applications that use those subsystems.

Graphic U-7. User mode.

User mode subsystems include

  • Win32 subsystem, which supports Windows applications
  • OS/2 subsystem, which supports OS/2 applications
  • POSIX subsystem, which supports POSIX-compliant applications
  • Security subsystem, which handles logon validation
NOTE

User mode processes cannot access hardware directly in Windows NT; they must pass their access requests to the Windows NT executive.

See also: