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authorBrian Paul <>1999-04-10 12:25:26 +0000
committerBrian Paul <>1999-04-10 12:25:26 +0000
commitbe8dd3e4083310985e6e7364e91b45d23c1c5616 (patch)
parent274513edbed622a6e34818bebb02010a7c19badb (diff)
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+NOTE: this information is obsolete for Mesa 3.1. Due to the big
+changes in the Mesa code, the threads support is out of date.
+Someone will have to review/update it.
+Mesa Threads README
+Mesa 2.6 is the starting point for an effort to make Mesa
+safe in multithreaded applications. The files src/mthreads.c and
+src/mthreads.h provide a platform independent threads API which Mesa
+uses internally to provide thread-safe operation. At present the mthreads
+code supports three thread APIS:
+ 1) POSIX threads (aka pthreads).
+ 2) Solaris / Unix International threads.
+ 3) Win32 threads (Win 95/NT).
+Here's the current list of targets which enable multithreaded handling
+in Mesa:
+ linux-386-pthread for Linux w/ Intel assembly and linuxthreads
+ sunos5-thread for Suns with SunOS 5.x, using Solaris threads
+ sunos5-pthread for Suns with SunOS 5.[56] using POSIX threads
+ sunos5-gcc-thread for Suns with SunOS 5.x and GCC, using Solaris threads
+ sunos5-gcc-pthread for Suns with SunOS 5.[56] and GCC, using POSIX threads
+In order to use Mesa with a multithreaded application, Mesa must be compiled
+using one of the thread-enabled configurations. In cases where a platform
+supports multiple APIs which are acceptable to Mesa, Mesa must be built
+with the same threads API as the application in order for things to work
+properly. For example, Solaris >= 2.5 support both POSIX threads and
+Sun's own threads API. In order to guarantee proper operation, it is
+necessary for both Mesa and application code to use the same threads API.
+So, if your application uses Sun's thread API, then you should build Mesa
+using one of the targets for Sun threads.
+Since this effort is still very much a work in progress, not all
+aspects of Mesa are thread safe. As of this release (Mesa 2.6) only the
+osmesa drivers have been made MT-safe. As work continues, other drivers
+such as the X11 drivers will also incorporate MT-safe features.
+The mtdemos directory contains some example programs which use
+multiple threads to render to osmesa rendering context(s).
+Linux users should be aware that there exist many different POSIX
+threads packages. The best solution is the linuxthreads package
+( as this package is the
+only one that really supports multiprocessor machines (AFAIK). See
+ for further
+information about the usage of linuxthreads.
+If you are interested in helping develop MT-safe Mesa, please send email
+to and who are the two most
+directly involved in this effort currently. Similarly, if you have problems
+using the MT-safe builds of Mesa, please send us comments/bugs etc.
+Future versions of Mesa will include more extensive documentation related
+to multithreading. This is the first release of our work, so please bear
+with us.
+ John Stone --
+ Christoph Poliwoda --