smartcaveman smartcaveman - 3 months ago 16
C# Question

Monitor vs lock

When is it appropriate to use either the

Monitor
class or the
lock
keyword for thread safety in C#?

EDIT:
It seems from the answers so far that
lock
is short hand for a series of calls to the
Monitor
class. What exactly is the lock call short-hand for? Or more explicitly,

class LockVsMonitor
{
private readonly object LockObject = new object();
public void DoThreadSafeSomethingWithLock(Action action)
{
lock (LockObject)
{
action.Invoke();
}
}
public void DoThreadSafeSomethingWithMonitor(Action action)
{
// What goes here ?
}
}


Update

Thank you all for your help : I have posted a another question as a follow up to some of the information you all provided. Since you seem to be well versed in this area, I have posted the link: What is wrong with this solution to locking and managing locked exceptions?

Answer

Eric Lippert talks about this in his blog: Locks and exceptions do not mix

The equivalent code differs between C# 4.0 and earlier versions.


In C# 4.0 it is:

bool lockWasTaken = false;
var temp = obj;
try
{
    Monitor.Enter(temp, ref lockWasTaken);
    { body }
}
finally
{
    if (lockWasTaken) Monitor.Exit(temp);
}

It relies on Monitor.Enter atomically setting the flag when the lock is taken.


And earlier it was:

var temp = obj;
Monitor.Enter(temp);
try
{
   body
}
finally
{
    Monitor.Exit(temp);
}

This relies on no exception being thrown between Monitor.Enter and the try. I think in debug code this condition was violated because the compiler inserted a NOP between them and thus made thread abortion between those possible.