like mutexes and semaphores, rwlocks suffered from a race condition
where the unlock operation could access the lock memory after another
thread successfully obtained the lock (and possibly destroyed or
unmapped the object). this has been fixed in the same way it was fixed
for other lock types.
in addition, the previous implementation favored writers over readers.
in the absence of other considerations, that is the best behavior for
rwlocks, and posix explicitly allows it. however posix also requires
read locks to be recursive. if writers are favored, any attempt to
obtain a read lock while a writer is waiting for the lock will fail,
causing "recursive" read locks to deadlock. this can be avoided by
keeping track of which threads already hold read locks, but doing so
requires unbounded memory usage, and there must be a fallback case
that favors readers in case memory allocation failed. and all of this
must be synchronized. the cost, complexity, and risk of errors in
getting it right is too great, so we simply favor readers.
tracking of the owner of write locks has been removed, as it was not
useful for anything. it could allow deadlock detection, but it's not
clear to me that returning EDEADLK (which a buggy program is likely to
ignore) is better than deadlocking; at least the latter behavior
prevents further data corruption. a correct program cannot invoke this
the reader count and write lock state, as well as the "last minute"
waiter flag have all been combined into a single atomic lock. this
means all state transitions for the lock are atomic compare-and-swap
operations. this makes establishing correctness much easier and may
finally, some code duplication has been cleaned up. more is called
for, especially the standard __timedwait idiom repeated in all locks.