Custom Mutex methods undefined by fastthread

At the risk of asking an FAQ, I’ve run into the following problem:

irb(main):001:0> require ‘thread’
=> true
irb(main):002:0> class Mutex; attr_accessor :owner; end
=> nil
irb(main):003:0> require ‘rubygems’
=> true
irb(main):004:0> require ‘fastthread’
=> true
irb(main):005:0> a = Mutex.new
=> #Mutex:0xb788184c
irb(main):006:0> a.owner = :foo
NoMethodError: undefined method `owner=’ for #Mutex:0xb788184c
from (irb):6

As you can see, the method definition prior to the fastthread require is
lost. This wasn’t a problem with 0.6.4, but is a problem with 1.0. Is
this a genuine bug, or is there a good reason for this?

$ ruby -v
ruby 1.8.4 (2005-12-24) [i486-linux]

On 11.06.2007 16:21, Alex Y. wrote:

irb(main):005:0> a = Mutex.new
=> #Mutex:0xb788184c
irb(main):006:0> a.owner = :foo
NoMethodError: undefined method `owner=’ for #Mutex:0xb788184c
from (irb):6

As you can see, the method definition prior to the fastthread require is
lost. This wasn’t a problem with 0.6.4, but is a problem with 1.0. Is
this a genuine bug, or is there a good reason for this?

I don’t know. But IMHO it’s a bad idea to change class Mutex. Why do
you think you need that?

Kind regards

robert

Robert K. wrote:

=> true

I don’t know. But IMHO it’s a bad idea to change class Mutex. Why do
you think you need that?
It’s in some legacy code that broke on a gem update. It’s used for
logging which thread’s currently got the lock from inside a #synchronize
block. I’ve fixed it by changing the require order, which I don’t like
much. It could probably be refactored out, but that’s not the point…

On Mon, 11 Jun 2007 23:21:29 +0900, Alex Y. [email protected]
wrote:

As you can see, the method definition prior to the fastthread require is
lost. This wasn’t a problem with 0.6.4, but is a problem with 1.0. Is
this a genuine bug, or is there a good reason for this?

In 1.0, the old Mutex class is swapped out and replaced with a fresh one
when fastthread is included. This was necessary to permit requiring
fastthread after thread had already been required (RubyGems, for
example, needed this). If the classes weren’t swapped, then any
pre-existing mutexes would suddenly end up with new method definitions,
breaking them.

-mental

Hi,

At Mon, 11 Jun 2007 23:21:29 +0900,
Alex Y. wrote in [ruby-talk:255142]:

irb(main):006:0> a.owner = :foo
NoMethodError: undefined method `owner=’ for #Mutex:0xb788184c
from (irb):6

Rather I consider it a bug if it is possible to change the
owner of a Mutex without locking.

As you can see, the method definition prior to the fastthread require is
lost. This wasn’t a problem with 0.6.4, but is a problem with 1.0. Is
this a genuine bug, or is there a good reason for this?

It would be a genuine bugfix, I guess.

On Tue, 12 Jun 2007 00:50:36 +0900, Alex Y. [email protected]
wrote:

irb(main):006:0> a.owner = :foo
NoMethodError: undefined method `owner=’ for #Mutex:0xb788184c
from (irb):6

Out of curiosity, how did it work with earlier versions of fastthread?
fastthread never stored the current owner in @owner.

It’s in some legacy code that broke on a gem update. It’s used for
logging which thread’s currently got the lock from inside a #synchronize
block. I’ve fixed it by changing the require order, which I don’t like
much. It could probably be refactored out, but that’s not the point…

Modifying Mutex isn’t a very safe way to accomplish that, particularly
as you can’t rely on implementation details (because the implementation
of Mutex is different for each Ruby implementation). If the owner
information is important to record, you’d be much better off writing a
wrapper around Mutex and using that instead.

-mental

On Tue, 12 Jun 2007 01:08:21 +0900, Nobuyoshi N.
[email protected] wrote:

As you can see, the method definition prior to the fastthread require is
lost. This wasn’t a problem with 0.6.4, but is a problem with 1.0. Is
this a genuine bug, or is there a good reason for this?

It would be a genuine bugfix, I guess.

Well, it made it more obvious that any customizations depending on Mutex
internals were broken (they didn’t work in 0.6.4 either; it was just
less obvious).

On the other hand, I don’t want to penalize customizations which are
threadsafe and don’t depend on Mutex internals. So, if folks can
provide examples of customizations which are threadsafe and which don’t
depend on Mutex internals, I’ll see what I can do for them.

-mental

MenTaLguY wrote:

(RubyGems, for example, needed this). If the classes weren’t
swapped, then any pre-existing mutexes would suddenly end up with new
method definitions, breaking them.

I see… And there’s no easy way to tell if Mutex has been modified in
user code before that, so you couldn’t even raise a warning in that
case… Hum. Still, at least Google knows about it now, for posterity
:slight_smile:

MenTaLguY wrote:

On Tue, 12 Jun 2007 00:50:36 +0900, Alex Y. [email protected]
wrote:

irb(main):006:0> a.owner = :foo NoMethodError: undefined method
`owner=’ for #Mutex:0xb788184c from (irb):6

Out of curiosity, how did it work with earlier versions of
fastthread? fastthread never stored the current owner in @owner.
No, that was mine. I was (for various reasons) assigning owner inside a
synchronized block.

off writing a wrapper around Mutex and using that instead.
To be honest, I’ll probably just get rid of the code in this case, as
it’s just logging execution data at this point, and it’s more of a
security blanket than essential information. However, I’m not really
relying on an implementation detail here - I was adding to the
implementation by reopening the class. I should have subclassed, but
isn’t the convention that we can modify classes to our own desires? I
admit that modifying a synchronisation primitive is playing with fire,
but I was purposefully not affecting its synchronisation behaviour.

Still, I understand the reason it’s stopped working - it just came at a
rather inconvenient moment :slight_smile:

On Tue, 12 Jun 2007 01:58:06 +0900, Alex Y. [email protected]
wrote:

I should have subclassed, but isn’t the convention that we can modify classes
to our own desires?

Yeah – I’m not uninterested in supporting that somehow, but on the
other hand all the Mutex customizations I’ve seen so far have either
lacked thread safety, or they depended on implementation details which
would have meant they wouldn’t work under e.g. JRuby either. So I’m a
little reluctant.

I admit that modifying a synchronisation primitive is playing with fire,
but I was purposefully not affecting its synchronisation behaviour.

Out of curiosity, could you post the code in question? It’s difficult
for me to see how modifying @owner could not affect the behavior of a
“classic” thread.rb mutex, but then I’ve not seen the code in question.

-mental

On Tue, 12 Jun 2007 02:10:00 +0900, MenTaLguY [email protected] wrote:

Out of curiosity, could you post the code in question? It’s difficult for
me to see how modifying @owner could not affect the behavior of a “classic”
thread.rb mutex, but then I’ve not seen the code in question.

Whoops, “classic” thread.rb uses @locked; never mind!

-mental

On Tue, 12 Jun 2007 01:58:06 +0900, Alex Y. [email protected]
wrote:

I should have subclassed, but isn’t the convention that we can modify classes
to our own desires?

Since your modification does sound safe (though you’re going to need to
be very careful about @owner’s readers…), I’ll see if I can think of a
solution for the customization problem (suggestions welcome!).

-mental

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