wiki:user_synchro

Version 4 (modified by alain, 3 years ago) (diff)

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This section describes the ALMOS-MKH implementation of the POSIX compliant, user-level synchronisation services: mutex, condvar, barrier and semaphore.

A) General Principles

All data structure defined by ALMOS-MKH to support the user-level, POSIX compliant, synchronization services are fully specific, and do NOT use the kernel level synchronization primitives described in section J.

  • A mutex is declared by a given user process as a pthread_mutex_t global variable.
  • A condvar is declared by a given user process as a pthread_cond_t global variable.
  • A barrier is declared by a given user process as a pthread_barrier_t global variable.
  • A semaphore is declared by a given user process as a sem_t global variable.

All these user types are implemented by ALMOS-MKH as unsigned long, but the value stored in user space is NOT used by the kernel. ALMOS-MKH uses only the virtual address as an identifier for a given synchronization variable. For each type of variable, ALMOS-MKH defines a specific internal data structure described below.

B) Mutex

The user level, POSIX compliant, mutex API is defined in the pthread library implemented by the pthread.h and pthread.c files.

It can be used by a muti-threaded user application to synchronize user threads running in different clusters. It allows a given thread to exclusive access to a shared user object.

The kernel implementation of a mutex is defined in the remote_mutex.h and remote_mutex.c files.

For each user mutex, ALMOS-MKH creates a kernel remote_mutex_t structure, dynamically allocated in the reference cluster (i.e. in the cluster containing the reference process descriptor).

  • The remote_mutex_create() function allocates and initializes a mutex, using an RPC if if the calling thread is not running in the reference cluster.
  • The remote_mutex_destroy() function destroys a given mutex, using RPC if the calling thread is not running in the reference cluster.
  • The blocking remote_mutex_lock() function implements a descheduling policy when the lock is already taken by another thread : the calling thread is registered in the waiting queue, rooted in the remote_mutex_t structure, and the the calling thread is blocked on the THREAD_BLOCKED_USERSYNC condition.
  • The remote_mutex_unlock() function unblocks the first waiting thread in the queue without releasing the mutex if the queue is not empty.

C) Condvar

The user level, POSIX compliant, condvar API is defined in the pthread library implemented by the pthread.h and pthread.c files.

It can be used by a muti-threaded user application to synchronize user threads running in different clusters. It allows a given thread to efficiently wait for a change in a shared user object. A condvar must always be associated to a mutex.

The kernel implementation of a condvar is defined in the remote_condvar.h and remote_condvar.c files.

For each user condvar, ALMOS-MKH creates a kernel remote_condvar_t structure, dynamically allocated in the reference cluster (i.e. in the cluster containing the reference process descriptor).

  • The remote_condvar_create() function allocates and initializes a condvar, using an RPC if if the calling thread is not running in the reference cluster.
  • The remote_condvar_destroy() function destroys a given condvar, using RPC if the calling thread is not running in the reference cluster.
  • The blocking remote_condvar_wait() function allows the calling thread to block on the THREAD_BLOCKED_USERSYNC condition and to register in the waiting queue attached to the remote_condvar_t structure.
  • The remote_condvar_signal() function allows (another) thread to unblock the first blocked thread waiting on a given condvar.
  • The remote_condvar_broadcast() function allows (another) thread to unblock all threads waiting on a given condvar.

The three functions wait(), signal() and broadcast() must be called by a thread holding the mutex associated to the condvar.

D) Semaphore

E) Barrier