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to interface with PCI devices (I mean building software for them), what you need to built very often is a kind of Kernel Mode Driver, wheter it's in Windows or Linux. Kernel mode drivers are written in C/C++ language, depending on the OS.In windows (NT kernel version, i.e. NT4/2K/XP) you have to built a driver that comply to WDM, or perhaps you want a quick hack version that don't comply to WDM but the older NT4 style driver, it'll still work though on win 2K/XP. In Linux,you might want to built the LKM(Loadable Kernel Module) as your choice of driver architecture. Get some books on the subject to get familiar, and mind you that the windows version is harder to make than the linux version. You will need Windows DDK (Driver Development Kit) for windows driver development. While in Linux (in kernel 2.4) all you need is the kernel sources in the right place.