In computer programming, a thread pool is a software design pattern for achieving concurrency of execution in a computer program. Often also called a replicated workers or worker-crew model,a thread pool maintains multiple threads waiting for tasks to be allocated for concurrent execution by the supervising program. By maintaining a pool of threads, the model increases performance and avoids latency in execution due to frequent creation and destruction of threads for short-lived tasks. The number of available threads is tuned to the computing resources available to the program, such as a parallel task queue after completion of execution.
The size of a thread pool is the number of threads kept in reserve for executing tasks. It is usually a tunable parameter of the application, adjusted to optimize program performance.Deciding the optimal thread pool size is crucial to optimize performance. Hyperbola-based Thread-pool Analysis (HTA) technique has been suggested in order to determine optimal thread pool size for cloud-based indexing process based upon available workload and bandwidth.
One benefit of a thread pool over creating a new thread for each task is that thread creation and destruction overhead is restricted to the initial creation of the pool, which may result in better performance and better system stability. Creating and destroying a thread and its associated resources can be an expensive process in terms of time. An excessive number of threads in reserve, however, wastes memory, and context-switching between the runnable threads invokes performance penalties. A socket connection to another network host, which might take many CPU cycles to drop and re-establish, can be maintained more efficiently by associating it with a thread that lives over the course of more than one network transaction.
Using a thread pool may be useful even putting aside thread startup time. There are implementations of thread pools that make it trivial to queue up work, control concurrency and sync threads at a higher level than can be done easily when manually managing threads. In these cases the performance benefits of use may be secondary.
Typically, a thread pool executes on a single computer. However, thread pools are conceptually related to server farms in which a master process, which might be a thread pool itself, distributes tasks to worker processes on different computers, in order to increase the overall throughput. Embarrassingly parallel problems are highly amenable to this approach.[ citation needed ]
The number of threads may be dynamically adjusted during the lifetime of an application based on the number of waiting tasks. For example, a web server can add threads if numerous web page requests come in and can remove threads when those requests taper down.[ disputed ] The cost of having a larger thread pool is increased resource usage. The algorithm used to determine when to create or destroy threads affects the overall performance:
In computer architecture, Amdahl's law is a formula which gives the theoretical speedup in latency of the execution of a task at fixed workload that can be expected of a system whose resources are improved. It is named after computer scientist Gene Amdahl, and was presented at the AFIPS Spring Joint Computer Conference in 1967.
In computing, a process is the instance of a computer program that is being executed by one or many threads. It contains the program code and its activity. Depending on the operating system (OS), a process may be made up of multiple threads of execution that execute instructions concurrently.
In computer science, a thread of execution is the smallest sequence of programmed instructions that can be managed independently by a scheduler, which is typically a part of the operating system. The implementation of threads and processes differs between operating systems, but in most cases a thread is a component of a process. Multiple threads can exist within one process, executing concurrently and sharing resources such as memory, while different processes do not share these resources. In particular, the threads of a process share its executable code and the values of its dynamically allocated variables and non-thread-local global variables at any given time.
Parallel computing is a type of computation where many calculations or the execution of processes are carried out simultaneously. Large problems can often be divided into smaller ones, which can then be solved at the same time. There are several different forms of parallel computing: bit-level, instruction-level, data, and task parallelism. Parallelism has long been employed in high-performance computing, but has gained broader interest due to the physical constraints preventing frequency scaling. As power consumption by computers has become a concern in recent years, parallel computing has become the dominant paradigm in computer architecture, mainly in the form of multi-core processors.
In computer science, an algorithm is called non-blocking if failure or suspension of any thread cannot cause failure or suspension of another thread; for some operations, these algorithms provide a useful alternative to traditional blocking implementations. A non-blocking algorithm is lock-free if there is guaranteed system-wide progress, and wait-free if there is also guaranteed per-thread progress.
In computing, a task is a unit of execution or a unit of work. The term is ambiguous; precise alternative terms include process, light-weight process, thread, step, request, or query. In the adjacent diagram, there are queues of incoming work to do and outgoing completed work, and a thread pool of threads to perform this work. Either the work units themselves or the threads that perform the work can be referred to as "tasks", and these can be referred to respectively as requests/responses/threads, incoming tasks/completed tasks/threads, or requests/responses/tasks.
Automatic parallelization, also auto parallelization, or autoparallelization refers to converting sequential code into multi-threaded and/or vectorized code in order to use multiple processors simultaneously in a shared-memory multiprocessor (SMP) machine. Fully automatic parallelization of sequential programs is a challenging because it requires complex program analysis and because the best approach may depend upon parameter values that are not known at compilation time.
Concurrent computing is a form of computing in which several computations are executed concurrently—during overlapping time periods—instead of sequentially, with one completing before the next starts.
The object pool pattern is a software creational design pattern that uses a set of initialized objects kept ready to use – a "pool" – rather than allocating and destroying them on demand. A client of the pool will request an object from the pool and perform operations on the returned object. When the client has finished, it returns the object to the pool rather than destroying it; this can be done manually or automatically.
In computer architecture, Gustafson's law gives the theoretical speedup in latency of the execution of a task at fixed execution time that can be expected of a system whose resources are improved. It is named after computer scientist John L. Gustafson and his colleague Edwin H. Barsis, and was presented in the article Reevaluating Amdahl's Law in 1988.
The active object design pattern decouples method execution from method invocation for objects that each reside in their own thread of control. The goal is to introduce concurrency, by using asynchronous method invocation and a scheduler for handling requests.
Task parallelism is a form of parallelization of computer code across multiple processors in parallel computing environments. Task parallelism focuses on distributing tasks—concurrently performed by processes or threads—across different processors. In contrast to data parallelism which involves running the same task on different components of data, task parallelism is distinguished by running many different tasks at the same time on the same data. A common type of task parallelism is pipelining which consists of moving a single set of data through a series of separate tasks where each task can execute independently of the others.
In computer architecture, multithreading is the ability of a central processing unit (CPU) to provide multiple threads of execution concurrently, supported by the operating system. This approach differs from multiprocessing. In a multithreaded application, the threads share the resources of a single or multiple cores, which include the computing units, the CPU caches, and the translation lookaside buffer (TLB).
Threading Building Blocks (TBB) is a C++ template library developed by Intel for parallel programming on multi-core processors. Using TBB, a computation is broken down into tasks that can run in parallel. The library manages and schedules threads to execute these tasks.
Parallel Extensions was the development name for a managed concurrency library developed by a collaboration between Microsoft Research and the CLR team at Microsoft. The library was released in version 4.0 of the .NET Framework. It is composed of two parts: Parallel LINQ (PLINQ) and Task Parallel Library (TPL). It also consists of a set of coordination data structures (CDS) – sets of data structures used to synchronize and co-ordinate the execution of concurrent tasks.
Grand Central Dispatch, is a technology developed by Apple Inc. to optimize application support for systems with multi-core processors and other symmetric multiprocessing systems. It is an implementation of task parallelism based on the thread pool pattern. The fundamental idea is to move the management of the thread pool out of the hands of the developer, and closer to the operating system. The developer injects "work packages" into the pool oblivious of the pool's architecture. This model improves simplicity, portability and performance.
For several years parallel hardware was only available for distributed computing but recently it is becoming available for the low end computers as well. Hence it has become inevitable for software programmers to start writing parallel applications. It is quite natural for programmers to think sequentially and hence they are less acquainted with writing multi-threaded or parallel processing applications. Parallel programming requires handling various issues such as synchronization and deadlock avoidance. Programmers require added expertise for writing such applications apart from their expertise in the application domain. Hence programmers prefer to write sequential code and most of the popular programming languages support it. This allows them to concentrate more on the application. Therefore, there is a need to convert such sequential applications to parallel applications with the help of automated tools. The need is also non-trivial because large amount of legacy code written over the past few decades needs to be reused and parallelized.
Join-patterns provides a way to write concurrent, parallel and distributed computer programs by message passing. Compared to the use of threads and locks, this is a high level programming model using communication constructs model to abstract the complexity of concurrent environment and to allow scalability. Its focus is on the execution of a chord between messages atomically consumed from a group of channels.
In parallel computing, work stealing is a scheduling strategy for multithreaded computer programs. It solves the problem of executing a dynamically multithreaded computation, one that can "spawn" new threads of execution, on a statically multithreaded computer, with a fixed number of processors. It does so efficiently in terms of execution time, memory usage, and inter-processor communication.
In parallel computing, the fork–join model is a way of setting up and executing parallel programs, such that execution branches off in parallel at designated points in the program, to "join" (merge) at a subsequent point and resume sequential execution. Parallel sections may fork recursively until a certain task granularity is reached. Fork–join can be considered a parallel design pattern. It was formulated as early as 1963.