Part of the Computing fundamentals glossary:

In storage, a pagefile is a reserved portion of a hard disk that is used as an extension of random access memory (RAM) for data in RAM that hasn't been used recently. A pagefile can be read from the hard disk as one contiguous chunk of data and thus faster than re-reading data from many different original locations. Windows NT administrators or users can reset the system-provided default size value of the pagefile to meet their particular needs.

In other operating systems, the pagefile is called a swap file or a swap partition.

This was last updated in April 2005
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

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