Java Concurrency - ReadWriteLock Interface


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A java.util.concurrent.locks.ReadWriteLock interface allows multiple threads to read at a time but only one thread can write at a time.

  • Read Lock − If no thread has locked the ReadWriteLock for writing then multiple thread can access the read lock.

  • Write Lock − If no thread is reading or writing, then one thread can access the write lock.

Lock Methods

Following is the list of important methods available in the Lock class.

Sr.No. Method & Description
1

public Lock readLock()

Returns the lock used for reading.

2

public Lock writeLock()

Returns the lock used for writing.

Example

The following TestThread program demonstrates these methods of the ReadWriteLock interface. Here we've used readlock() to acquire the read-lock and writeLock() to acquire the write-lock.

Live Demo
import java.util.concurrent.locks.ReentrantReadWriteLock;

public class TestThread {
   private static final ReentrantReadWriteLock lock = new ReentrantReadWriteLock(true);
   private static String message = "a";

   public static void main(String[] args) throws InterruptedException {
      Thread t1 = new Thread(new WriterA());
      t1.setName("Writer A");
      
      Thread t2 = new Thread(new WriterB());
      t2.setName("Writer B");
      
      Thread t3 = new Thread(new Reader());
      t3.setName("Reader");
      t1.start();
      t2.start();
      t3.start();
      t1.join();
      t2.join();
      t3.join();
   }

   static class Reader implements Runnable {

      public void run() {
         
         if(lock.isWriteLocked()) {
            System.out.println("Write Lock Present.");
         }
         lock.readLock().lock();

         try {
            Long duration = (long) (Math.random() * 10000);
            System.out.println(Thread.currentThread().getName() 
               + "  Time Taken " + (duration / 1000) + " seconds.");
            Thread.sleep(duration);
         } catch (InterruptedException e) {
            e.printStackTrace();
         } finally {
            System.out.println(Thread.currentThread().getName() +": "+ message );
            lock.readLock().unlock();
         }
      }
   }

   static class WriterA implements Runnable {

      public void run() {
         lock.writeLock().lock();
         
         try {
            Long duration = (long) (Math.random() * 10000);
            System.out.println(Thread.currentThread().getName() 
               + "  Time Taken " + (duration / 1000) + " seconds.");
            Thread.sleep(duration);
         } catch (InterruptedException e) {
            e.printStackTrace();
         } finally {
            message = message.concat("a");
            lock.writeLock().unlock();
         }
      }
   }

   static class WriterB implements Runnable {

      public void run() {
         lock.writeLock().lock();
         
         try {
            Long duration = (long) (Math.random() * 10000);
            System.out.println(Thread.currentThread().getName() 
               + "  Time Taken " + (duration / 1000) + " seconds.");
            Thread.sleep(duration);
         } catch (InterruptedException e) {
            e.printStackTrace();
         } finally {
            message = message.concat("b");
            lock.writeLock().unlock();
         }
      }
   }
}

This will produce the following result.

Output

Writer A  Time Taken 6 seconds.
Write Lock Present.
Writer B  Time Taken 2 seconds.
Reader  Time Taken 0 seconds.
Reader: aab


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