2049CH09 - Bitter, Rick et al "Multithreading...

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Unformatted text preview: Bitter, Rick et al "Multithreading in LabVIEW" LabVIEW Advanced Programming Techinques Boca Raton: CRC Press LLC,2001 9 ©2001 CRC Press LLC Multithreading in LabVIEW This chapter discusses using multithreading to improve LabVIEW applications’ performance. Multithreading is an advanced programming topic, and its use requires the programmer to posses a fundamental understanding of this technology. Lab- VIEW provides two significant advantages to the programmer when working with multitasking and multithreading. The first advantage is the complete abstraction of the threads themselves. LabVIEW programmers never create, destroy, or synchronize threads. The second advantage is the dataflow model used by LabVIEW. This model provides G a distinct advantage over its textual language counterparts because it simplifies a programmer’s perception of multitasking. The fundamental concept of multitasking can be difficult to grasp with text-based languages. Multithreading adds a new dimension to software engineering. Applications can perform multiple tasks somewhat simultaneously. A good example of an application that has added multithreading is Microsoft Word for Windows 95 (Version 7.0). Word for Windows 95 uses multithreading to perform spell-checking and grammar validation. The threads added to perform this task allow the application to perform these tasks while the user is typing. The previous version, Word 6.0 for Windows 3.1, cannot do this because it runs only one task at a time; a user would have to stop typing and select Check Spelling . The first six sections of this chapter provide the basic knowledge of multithreading. This discussion focuses on definitions, mul- titasking mechanics, multithreading specific problems, and information on various thread-capable operating systems. A brief section on multithreading myths is presented. The impact of multithread- ing on applications is misunderstood by a number of programmers. Section 9.6 explains precisely what the benefits of multithreading are. Many readers will be surprised to learn that multithreading does little to increase the speed of an appli- cation. Multi-threading does provide the illusion that sections of an application run faster. The last three sections of this chapter are devoted to the effective use of multi- threading in LabVIEW. A strategy to estimate the maximum number of useful threads will be presented. The focal point of this chapter is using subroutine VIs to maximize application performance. The use of threads adds a new dimension of benefits to both subroutine VIs and DLLs. ©2001 CRC Press LLC 9.1 MULTITHREADING TERMINOLOGY The following terminology will be used throughout this chapter. Programmers who require additional information on any of these topics should consult the chapter bibliography....
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This note was uploaded on 03/11/2010 for the course MECHANICAL 1234 taught by Professor Futao during the Spring '10 term at Kasetsart University.

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2049CH09 - Bitter, Rick et al "Multithreading...

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