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multithreading

It is easy to confuse multithreading with multitasking or multiprogramming , which are somewhat different ideas.

Multithreading is the ability of a program or an operating system process to manage its use by more than one user at a time and to even manage multiple requests by the same user without having to have multiple copies of the programming running in the computer. Each user request for a program or system service (and here a user can also be another program) is kept track of as a thread with a separate identity. As programs work on behalf of the initial request for that thread and are interrupted by other requests, the status of work on behalf of that thread is kept track of until the work is completed.

This was last updated in September 2005

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