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Because minimization of memory requirements is a major design goal, Windows CE is built from a set of discrete modules and submodules, or components. Each of these modules provides full or partial support for major features of the operating system, and can be tailored to the needs of a given embedded application. By selecting a minimum set of modules and components, a device manufacturer can control the size ("footprint") of the operating system software while still providing the richest possible set of APIs for developing applications and enhancing the performance of 32-bit, preemptive multitasking, multithreaded systems.
To learn more about Windows CE modules and components, download our technical paper, Understanding Modularity in Microsoft Windows CE, from this Microsoft Web Site.