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  • Swapping is a process in operating system where a program from main memory is swapped to external memory for temporary period to save and empty the main memory.
  • This helps to make space for other processes and helps to improve the main memory utilization.
  • in main memory the space where the swapped out process is stored is called swap space.
  • The concept of swapping is divided into two concepts,
    • Swap-in
    • Swap-out


  • Swap-in is a method of removing program from main memory and adding that to secondary memory.


  • Swap-out is a method of removing the program from secondary memory and putting back in main memory.
  • Here is basic example of calculating time to figure out how much time it will take for process to swap-in and swap-out.

Suppose the user process's size is 2048KB and is a standard hard disk where swapping has a data transfer rate of 1Mbps. Now we will calculate how long it will take to transfer from main memory to secondary memory.

1MB = 1024KB

User process size is 2048KB
Data transfer rate is 1Mbps = 1024 Kbps

Time = process size/transfer rate
Time = 2048/1024
Time = 2 seconds
Time = 2000 milliseconds

swap-in will take 2000 milliseconds and swap-out will take same time as swap-in,
therefore, swap-in and swap-out will take total 4000 milliseconds.

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