ZwSetInformationVirtualMemory function (ntifs.h)

The ZwSetInformationVirtualMemory routine performs an operation on a specified list of address ranges in the user address space of a process.


NTSYSAPI NTSTATUS ZwSetInformationVirtualMemory(
  [in] HANDLE                           ProcessHandle,
  [in] ULONG_PTR                        NumberOfEntries,
  [in] PMEMORY_RANGE_ENTRY              VirtualAddresses,
  [in] PVOID                            VmInformation,
  [in] ULONG                            VmInformationLength


[in] ProcessHandle

Specifies an open handle for the process in the context of which the operation is to be performed. This handle cannot be invalid. Use the NtCurrentProcess macro, defined in Ntddk.h, to specify the current process.

[in] VmInformationClass

Specifies the type of operation to perform. Set to VmPrefetchInformation defined in the VIRTUAL_MEMORY_INFORMATION_CLASS enumeration, see ntddk.h.

[in] NumberOfEntries

Number of entries in the array pointed to by the VirtualAddresses parameter. This parameter cannot be 0.

[in] VirtualAddresses

Pointer to an array of MEMORY_RANGE_ENTRY structures in which each entry specifies a virtual address range to be processed. The virtual address ranges may cover any part of the process address space accessible by the target process.

[in] VmInformation

A pointer to a buffer that contains memory information. The format and content of the buffer depend on the specified information class.

If VmInformationClass is VmPrefetchInformation, this parameter cannot be this parameter cannot be NULL and must point to a ULONG variable that is set to 0.

[in] VmInformationLength

The size of the buffer pointed to by VmInformation.

If VmInformationClass is VmPrefetchInformation, this must be sizeof (ULONG).

Return value

ZwSetInformationVirtualMemory returns STATUS_SUCCESS on success, or the appropriate NTSTATUS error code on failure.


The ZwSetInformationVirtualMemory routine is called by drivers that know the set of addresses they will be accessing. If it's likely that these addresses are no longer resident in memory (i.e. they have been paged out to disk), calling this routine on those address ranges before access reduces the overall latency because it efficiently brings in those address ranges from disk using large, concurrent I/O requests where possible.

ZwSetInformationVirtualMemory allows drivers to make efficient use of disk hardware by issuing large, concurrent I/Os where possible when the driver provides a list of process address ranges that are going to be accessed. Even for a single address range (e.g. a file mapping), the routine can provide performance improvements by issuing a single large I/O rather than the many smaller I/Os that would be issued via page faulting.

Drivers call this routine purely for performance optimization: prefetching is not necessary for accessing the target address ranges. The prefetched memory is not added to the target process' working set; it is cached in physical memory. When the prefetched address ranges are accessed by the target process, they are added to the working set.

Because this call is not necessary for correct operation of the driver, it is treated as a strong hint by the system and is subject to usual physical memory constraints where it can completely or partially fail under low-memory conditions. It can also create memory pressure if called with large address ranges, so applications should only prefetch address ranges they will actually use.


Requirement Value
Minimum supported client Windows 10, version 1511.
Target Platform Universal
Header ntifs.h (include Ntddk.h)
Library NtosKrnl.lib
DLL NtosKrnl.exe
DDI compliance rules HwStorPortProhibitedDDIs, PowerIrpDDis