Definition of queue in The Network Encyclopedia.

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What is Queue?

A collection of items waiting to be processed in a specific order. Examples of queues in computer and networking technology are numerous and include the following:

  • A print queue, which consists of print jobs waiting to be sent to a print device
  • A messaging queue (on a mail server such as Microsoft Exchange Server), which consists of messages waiting to be sent
  • A backlog of packets waiting to be forwarded over a specific interface by a router
  • Information, function calls, or transactions sent by one application and forwarded to another by Microsoft Message Queue (MSMQ) Server in Microsoft Windows NT or Message Queuing in Windows 2000
  • A collection of fax messages waiting to be processed and sent by a fax server
  • A series of system messages, such as key presses and mouse clicks, sent by applications to an operating system for processing

Print Queue

Print jobs waiting to be processed.

Message Queue

Group of messages waiting to be delivered.