AskDefine | Define spool

Dictionary Definition

spool n : a winder around which thread or tape or film or other flexible materials can be wound [syn: bobbin, reel]


1 transfer data intended for a peripheral device (usually a printer) into temporary storage
2 wind onto a spool or a reel

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. A device around which thread, wire or cable is wound, especially a cylinder or spindle.



  1. : To send files to some device or program (a "spooler" or demon) that puts them in a queue for later processing of some kind. Without qualification, the spooler is the "print spooler" controlling output of jobs to a printer; but the term has been used in connection with other peripherals (especially plotters and graphics devices) and occasionally even for input devices.

Extensive Definition

Spool can mean one of the following:
  • Spool, an unflanged plastic cylindrical hub on which magnetic tape is wound in a compact cassette.
  • Spool, a usually low-flanged or unflanged cylinder on which thread, wire, cable, paper, or film is wound for distribution and use.
  • Bobbin, a cylinder or reel on which a quantity of thread, yarn or wire is wound for use in a particular machine or device.
  • Spooling, a physical or metaphorical data storage device in computing.
  • Spool, a shaft of a gas turbine engine. Spooling up usually refers to a jet engine spinning up.
  • Spool, a large spa/small pool (an insulated inground small pool with spa jets built-in, named by Insulated Water Structures).
  • Spool, a verb used to describe a turbocharger or supercharger on a car engine beginning to spin and deliver power.
  • Spool, a term for a solid axle, one which does not have a differential to allow a wheel speed difference from side to side.
spool in Danish: Spole
spool in German: Spule
spool in Japanese: スプール
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