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From: Roland Schwarz (roland.schwarz_at_[hidden])
Date: 2004-12-04 08:06:49

Steve Hartmann wrote:

>I am about to port some Windows code which does a lot of
>WaitForMultipleObjects(), waiting for several signals at a time. I was
>wondering if there was some way to wait for multiple boost::condition(s)
>at the same time.
I arrived at the very same question some time ago. Since then I had to
learn, that waiting for
a condition and waiting for multiple objects are not as closely related
at it might seem at first glance.

A condition does not carry state, while the handle you are waiting for
does. A condition simply
signals that a state change has appeared. Specifically a state change of
a ceratin (group of) variable(s)
that is (are) protected by a mutex.

What you rather would need to have, is that a certain condition be
signalled when an operating system
supplied handle changes state. I ended having created a small class
"wfmo" with the condition
to be signalled as a member. The class has meber functions to add
operating system handles,
and creates a thread internally that blocks on WaitForMultipleObjects.
On return it signals the

This is working. However I think it does address the problem only in a
pragmatic way. (And I am
afraid the runtime overhead due to the additional thread might be not
negligible in some cases.)

To do away with the additional thread you would need to modify the
condition.wait() to accept
the handles of the objects you are waiting for. Internally the wait
currently uses WaitForSingleObject.
It would be a simple task to replace them by WaitForMultipleObjects.
But: You need to supply operating system handles then! And this breaks

The real problem is:
Boost currently does not have a low level IO concept, that defines its
own IO handles and the like.
Altough this topic has been repeadetly discussed on the list there still
has been no proposal (at least
formally) that addresses theses issues. Yes there have been proposals
about networking and the
like but not about general (low level) IO. (On top of which I think,
networking should be built.)

Nevertheless, if you like I can send you my wmfo.hpp for study.


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