F543 COMPUTER SCIENCE
SPOOLING AND FILE ALLOCATION TABLES
VIRTUAL MEMORY SOUNDS PRETTY USEFUL,
BUT DOES IT HAVE ANY OTHER USES?
• Spooling is used when the rate the processor can send data is faster than
the rate a peripheral device can output it.
• For example, consider a printer.
• It might be able to print 20 pages per minute, a third of a page per second. However,
the processor is cable of sending pages much faster than this.
• This is known as speed mismatch.
• To prevent the processor from being "held up" by the printer (or another
peripheral), the print data is saved to secondary storage.
• It is then retrieved and sent to the printer when the printer is ready – in the
mean time the processor can work on higher priority tasks.
CAN YOU PROVIDE A DIAGRAM TO HELP
The speed of data
transfer is faster
FILE ALLOCATION TABLES
• The operating system has the task of creating and managing
the file system on its hard disk drives.
• There are a number of filing methods an operating system can
use to organise files and folders. One of them is called the FAT
filing system. Otherwise known as the 'File Allocation Table'
OK, BUT HOW?
• All data on a hard disk is stored in 'Sectors'. Sectors are
grouped together into 'clusters‘.
• The cluster is the minimum unit of storage a file can use. If the
file is actually smaller than a cluster, then the unused space is
wasted. A typical cluster size is 4kb but can vary from 2kb to
32kb. Each cluster is numbered so the FAT can locate a
particular cluster on the hard disk.
IS THERE ANY WAY TO REPRESENT THIS ON