Virtual memory expands the capability of a computer system to run programs that exceeds the system’s memory capacity. This process typically involves three steps.
- Request. The system unit receives a request to run a program that requires more RAM than is available.
- Store. The operating system recognizes the problem, divides the program into parts, and stores the parts on the hard disk.
- Execute. The first part of the program is read into RAM and the program begins to execute. As the program executes, the other parts are moved back and forth between RAM and the hard disk as needed.
To learn more about how virtual memory works, click the link below and view the animation.