What is concurrency control in DBMS?

Concurrency control concept comes under the Transaction in database management system (DBMS). It is a procedure in DBMS which helps us for the management of two simultaneous processes to execute without conflicts between each other, these conflicts occur in multi user systems.

Concurrency can simply be said to be executing multiple transactions at a time. It is required to increase time efficiency. If many transactions try to access the same data, then inconsistency arises. Concurrency control required to maintain consistency data.

For example, if we take ATM machines and do not use concurrency, multiple persons cannot draw money at a time in different places. This is where we need concurrency.


The advantages of concurrency control are as follows −

  • Waiting time will be decreased.

  • Response time will decrease.

  • Resource utilization will increase.

  • System performance & Efficiency is increased.

Control concurrency

The simultaneous execution of transactions over shared databases can create several data integrity and consistency problems.

For example, if too many people are logging in the ATM machines, serial updates and synchronization in the bank servers should happen whenever the transaction is done, if not it gives wrong information and wrong data in the database.

Main problems in using Concurrency

The problems which arise while using concurrency are as follows −

  • Updates will be lost − One transaction does some changes and another transaction deletes that change. One transaction nullifies the updates of another transaction.

  • Uncommitted Dependency or dirty read problem − On variable has updated in one transaction, at the same time another transaction has started and deleted the value of the variable there the variable is not getting updated or committed that has been done on the first transaction this gives us false values or the previous values of the variables this is a major problem.

  • Inconsistent retrievals − One transaction is updating multiple different variables, another transaction is in a process to update those variables, and the problem occurs is inconsistency of the same variable in different instances.

Concurrency control techniques

The concurrency control techniques are as follows −


Lock guaranties exclusive use of data items to a current transaction. It first accesses the data items by acquiring a lock, after completion of the transaction it releases the lock.

Types of Locks

The types of locks are as follows −

  • Shared Lock [Transaction can read only the data item values]

  • Exclusive Lock [Used for both read and write data item values]

Time Stamping

Time stamp is a unique identifier created by DBMS that indicates relative starting time of a transaction. Whatever transaction we are doing it stores the starting time of the transaction and denotes a specific time.

This can be generated using a system clock or logical counter. This can be started whenever a transaction is started. Here, the logical counter is incremented after a new timestamp has been assigned.


It is based on the assumption that conflict is rare and it is more efficient to allow transactions to proceed without imposing delays to ensure serializability.

Updated on: 02-Sep-2023

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