How to Distribute Pages in the Swap Areas

Each swap area is organized into slots, where each slot contains exactly one page. When swapping out, the kernel tries to store pages in contiguous slots to minimize disk seek time when accessing the swap area; this is an important element of an efficient swapping algorithm.

If more than one swap area is used, things become more complicated. Faster swap areas—swap areas stored in faster disks—get a higher priority. When looking for a free slot, the search starts in the swap area that has the highest priority. If there are several of them, swap areas of the same priority are cyclically selected to avoid overloading one of them. If no free slot is found in the swap areas that have the highest priority, the search continues in the swap areas that have a priority next to the highest one, and so on.

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