Producer Consumer Problem in C
The producer-consumer problem is an example of a multi-process synchronization problem. The problem describes two processes, the producer and the consumer that shares a common fixed-size buffer use it as a queue.
- The producer’s job is to generate data, put it into the buffer, and start again.
- At the same time, the consumer is consuming the data (i.e., removing it from the buffer), one piece at a time.
Problem: Given the common fixed-size buffer, the task is to make sure that the producer can’t add data into the buffer when it is full and the consumer can’t remove data from an empty buffer.
Solution: The producer is to either go to sleep or discard data if the buffer is full. The next time the consumer removes an item from the buffer, it notifies the producer, who starts to fill the buffer again. In the same manner, the consumer can go to sleep if it finds the buffer to be empty. The next time the producer puts data into the buffer, it wakes up the sleeping consumer.
Note: An inadequate solution could result in a deadlock where both processes are waiting to be awakened.
Below is the implementation of the above approach: