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(Simultaneous Peripheral Operations OnLine) The overlapping of low-speed operations with normal processing. Spooling originated with mainframes in order to optimize slow operations such as reading cards and printing. Card input was read onto disk and printer output was stored on disk. In that way, the business data processing was performed at high speed, receiving input from disk and sending output to disk. Subsequently, spooling is used to buffer data for the printer as well as remote batch terminals. See print spooler.

print spooler

Software that manages sending jobs to the printer. When an application prints a document, the formatted output is stored on disk, and the print spooler feeds the print images to the printer in the background at slower printing speeds. Storing the print jobs on disk allows multiple printing requests to be queued while the user continues printing from the same or other application without waiting for the current document to be printed. See spooling.

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