Wednesday, August 11, 2010


If a computer becomes low on RAM during intensive application cycles, many CPU architectures and operating systems are able to perform an operation known as "swapping". Swapping uses a paging file, an area on a hard drive temporarily used as additional working memory. Excessive use of this mechanism is called thrashing and is generally undesirable because it lowers overall system performance, mainly because hard drives are far slower than RAM. However, if a program attempts to allocate memory and fails, it may crash.

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