Puneet Arora Puneet Arora - 1 month ago 4
Python Question

In Python threading, how I can I track a thread's completion?

I've a python program that spawns a number of threads. These threads last anywhere between 2 seconds to 30 seconds. In the main thread I want to track whenever each thread completes and print a message. If I just sequentially .join() all threads and the first thread lasts 30 seconds and others complete much sooner, I wouldn't be able to print a message sooner -- all messages will be printed after 30 seconds.

Basically I want to block until any thread completes. As soon as a thread completes, print a message about it and go back to blocking if any other threads are still alive. If all threads are done then exit program.

One way I could think of is to have a queue that is passed to all the threads and block on queue.get(). Whenever a message is received from the queue, print it, check if any other threads are alive using threading.active_count() and if so, go back to blocking on queue.get(). This would work but here all the threads need to follow the discipline of sending a message to the queue before terminating.

I'm wonder if this is the conventional way of achieving this behavior or are there any other / better ways ?


Here's a variation on @detly's answer that lets you specify the messages from your main thread, instead of printing them from your target functions. This creates a wrapper function which calls your target and then prints a message before terminating. You could modify this to perform any kind of standard cleanup after each thread completes.


import threading
import time

def target1():
    print "target1 running"

def target2():
    print "target2 running"

def launch_thread_with_message(target, message, args=[], kwargs={}):
    def target_with_msg(*args, **kwargs):
        target(*args, **kwargs)
        print message
    thread = threading.Thread(target=target_with_msg, args=args, kwargs=kwargs)
    return thread

if __name__ == '__main__':
    thread1 = launch_thread_with_message(target1, "finished target1")
    thread2 = launch_thread_with_message(target2, "finished target2")

    print "main: launched all threads"


    print "main: finished all threads"