Home > DeveloperSection > Interviews > Difference between critical section, mutex and semaphore?

Posted on    August-17-2012 2:18 AM

 Visual C++
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Arun Singh

Total Post:310

Posted on    August-17-2012 12:00 AM

A critical section in which the process may be changing common variables, updating table, writing a file and perform another function. The important problem is that if one process is executing in its critical section, no other process is to be allowed to execute in its critical section. Each process much request permission to enter its critical section.

A semaphore is a tool for synchronization and it is used to remove the critical section problem which is that no two processes can run simultaneously together so to remove this two signal operations are used named as wait and signal which is used to remove the mutual exclusion of the critical section. as an unsigned one of the most important synchronization primitives, because you can build many other Decrementing the semaphore is called acquiring or locking it, incrementing is called releasing or unlocking.

A mutex is a special case of the semaphore and also known as binary mutex it can have only two values minimum of 0 and maximum of 1, meaning it can be either locked or unlocked. It is used to prevent more than one thread from accessing the same data while allowing multiple threads to run on it.

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