[concurrency-interest] Atomic get/set vs compareAndSet

Peter Veentjer alarmnummer at gmail.com
Fri Apr 30 11:49:13 EDT 2010

I have a question about the contention costs on the memory bus of a
cas vs a get/set pair.

e.g. an example of a cas.

    public void ___releaseLock(Transaction expectedLockOwner) {
        ___LOCKOWNER_UPDATER.compareAndSet(this, null,
expectedLockOwner, set(this, null);

example of a get/set

    public void ___releaseLock(Transaction expectedLockOwner) {
        if (___LOCKOWNER_UPDATER.get(this) == expectedLockOwner) {
            ___LOCKOWNER_UPDATER.set(this, null);

>From a logical point of view both provide the same semantics. In case
of the get/set it can't
happen that another thread changes the lock owner after it has been
locked. So I don't
need to worry about another thread updating the lock owner after the
get has returned
the expectedLockOwner (get/set essentially have become atomic).

My question is if the get/set combination causes less contention on
the memory bus
compared to a cas. So it is a common practice to replace cas by
get/sets if possible?

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