Module Eio.Mutex

Mutual exclusion.

A mutex can be used to ensure that only one piece of code can access a shared resource at one time.

Unlike Stdlib.Mutex, which blocks the whole domain while waiting to take the mutex, this module allows other Eio fibers to run while waiting. You should use this module if your critical section may perform blocking operations, while Stdlib.Mutex may be more efficient if the lock is held only briefly and the critial section does not switch fibers.

Note that mutexes are often unnecessary for code running in a single domain, as the scheduler will only switch to another fiber if you perform an operation that can block.

type t

The type for a concurrency-friendly mutex.

exception Poisoned of exn

Raised if you attempt to use a mutex that has been disabled.

val create : unit -> t

create () creates an initially unlocked mutex.

val use_rw : protect:bool -> t -> ( unit -> 'a ) -> 'a

use_rw ~protect t fn waits for the mutex to be free and then executes fn () while holding the mutex locked. fn may mutate the resource protected by the mutex, but must ensure the resource is in a consistent state before returning. If fn raises an exception, the mutex is disabled and cannot be used again.

  • parameter protect

    If true, uses Cancel.protect to prevent the critical section from being cancelled. Cancellation is not prevented while waiting to take the lock.

val use_ro : t -> ( unit -> 'a ) -> 'a

use_ro t fn is like use_rw ~protect:false, but if fn raises an exception it unlocks the mutex instead of disabling it. Use this if you only need read-only access to the mutex's resource and so know that it will be in a consistent state even if an exception is raised.

Note: a mutex still only allows one fiber to have the mutex locked at a time, even if all operations are "read-only".

Low-level API

Care must be taken when locking a mutex manually. It is easy to forget to unlock it in some cases, which will result in deadlock the next time a fiber tries to use it. In particular, you need to consider:

val lock : t -> unit

Lock the given mutex. Only one fiber can have the mutex locked at any time. A fiber that attempts to lock a mutex already locked by another fiber will suspend until the other fiber unlocks the mutex. If no other fiber has the lock, this returns immediately without switching fibers.

val unlock : t -> unit

unlock t unlocks the mutex.

  • raises Sys_error

    if the mutex is unlocked.

val try_lock : t -> bool

Same as lock, but does not suspend the calling thread if the mutex is already locked: just return false immediately in that case. If the mutex is unlocked, lock it and return true.