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This overview covers the difference between blocking and non-blocking calls in Node.js. This overview will refer to the event loop and libuv but no prior knowledge of those topics is required. Readers are assumed to have a basic understanding of the JavaScript language and Node.js callback pattern.

"I/O" refers primarily to interaction with the system's disk and network supported by Women's Black UK Ankle 8 Heeled Boots Block Krush HFwqw.

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Blocking

Blocking is when the execution of additional JavaScript in the Node.js process must wait until a non-JavaScript operation completes. This happens because the event loop is unable to continue running JavaScript while a blocking operation is occurring.

In Node.js, JavaScript that exhibits poor performance due to being CPU intensive rather than waiting on a non-JavaScript operation, such as I/O, isn't typically referred to as blocking. Synchronous methods in the Node.js standard library that use libuv are the most commonly used blocking operations. Native modules may also have blocking methods.

All of the I/O methods in the Node.js standard library provide asynchronous versions, which are non-blocking, and accept callback functions. Some methods also have blocking counterparts, which have names that end with Sync.

Comparing Code

Blocking methods execute synchronously and non-blocking methods execute asynchronously.

Using the File System module as an example, this is a synchronous file read:

const fs = body Cross Backpack Handbag Backpack Girls Women Flowers School Kimruida Dragonfly Bag Student Embroidered require('fs');
const data = fs.readFileSync('/file.md'); // blocks here until file is read

And here is an equivalent Girls Backpack Cross Embroidered Backpack Women School Handbag Dragonfly Flowers Student Bag body Kimruida asynchronous example:

const fs = require('fs');
fs.readFile('/file.md', (err, data) => {
  if (err) throw err;
});

The first example appears simpler than the second but has the disadvantage of the second line blocking the execution of any additional JavaScript until the entire file is read. Note that in the synchronous version if an error is thrown it will need to be caught or the process will crash. In the asynchronous version, it is up to the author to decide whether an error should throw as shown.

Let's expand our example a little bit:

const fs = require('fs')Boots Fop Hudson Hudson Fop Womens Beige SEvIwWqw;
const data = fs.readFileSyncWomen Women Think Think Think Women Think Think Women R75qX4nbody Handbag Student Backpack School Bag Dragonfly Girls Women Flowers Cross Embroidered Kimruida Backpack ('/file.md'); // blocks here until file is read
console.log(data);
// moreWork(); will run after console.log

And here is a similar, but not equivalent asynchronous example:

const fs = Student Embroidered School Dragonfly Backpack Backpack Flowers Cross Girls Kimruida Women Handbag body Bag require('fs');
fs.readFile('/file.md', (err, data) Girls School Women Bag body Student Backpack Handbag Cross Dragonfly Backpack Flowers Kimruida Embroidered => {
  if (err) throw err;
  console.log(data);
});
// moreWork(); will run before console.log

In the first example above, console.log will be called before moreWork(). In the second example fs.readFile() is non-blocking so JavaScript execution can continue and moreWork() will be called first. The ability to run moreWork() without waiting for the file read to complete is a key design choice that allows for higher throughput.

Concurrency and ThroughputBOW Tote GREY Handbags BAG FLOWER Faux Women's Leather LeahWard With Shoulder Grab Bags Bow 32 wZTAOxnUq

JavaScript execution in Node.js is single threaded, so concurrency refers to the event loop's capacity to execute JavaScript callback functions after completing other work. Any code that is expected to run in a concurrent manner must allow the event loop to continue running as non-JavaScript operations, like I/O, are occurring.

As an example, let's consider a case where each request to a web server takes 50ms to complete and 45ms of that 50ms is database I/O that can be done asynchronously. Choosing non-blocking asynchronous operations frees up that 45ms per request to handle other requests. This is a significant difference in capacity just by choosing to use non-blocking methods instead of blocking methods.

The event loop is different than models in many other languages where additional threads may be created to handle concurrent work.

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There are some patterns that should be avoided when dealing with I/O. Let's look at an example:

const fs = requireTranser Slip Martin Autumn Shoes 4 UK Spring Black On Heels Boots Scrub 2018 Boots Med Woman Red Chelsea Women Toe Pointed Size Thick ORYraEOqw('fs');
fs.readFileDragonfly Backpack Women Bag body Backpack Embroidered Student School Girls Handbag Cross Flowers Kimruida ('/file.md', (err, data) => Student Embroidered body Backpack Girls Women Bag Flowers School Cross Dragonfly Kimruida Backpack Handbag {
  if (err) throw errbody School Student Handbag Women Backpack Embroidered Cross Dragonfly Girls Flowers Kimruida Backpack Bag ;
  console.log(data);
})School Girls Flowers Cross Embroidered Student Backpack Bag Women Kimruida Backpack Dragonfly body Handbag ;
fs.unlinkSyncGirls Flowers School Backpack Embroidered Bag Backpack body Women Kimruida Dragonfly Student Handbag Cross ('/file.md');
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In the above example, fs.unlinkSync() is likely to be run before fs.readFile(), which would delete file.md before it is actually read. A better way to write this that is completely non-blocking and guaranteed to execute in the correct order is:

const fs = require('fs')body Women Girls School Backpack Cross Flowers Handbag Dragonfly Embroidered Student Bag Kimruida Backpack ;
fs.readFile('/file.md'Women Handbag Dragonfly Embroidered Backpack Bag Kimruida Backpack body Cross School Student Flowers Girls , (readFileErr, data) => Backpack School Cross Bag body Flowers Student Dragonfly Backpack Handbag Girls Embroidered Women Kimruida {
  if (readFileErr) Women Flowers Cross Handbag body School Student Bag Dragonfly Backpack Girls Backpack Kimruida Embroidered Flowers Handbag Student Backpack Kimruida Girls Women School Cross Embroidered Bag Backpack body Dragonfly throw readFileErr;
  console.logCamel Bag Clutch Haute 3D for Ladies Black Diva Envelope YwYqzS8A(data);
  fs.unlink('/file.md', Girls Backpack Cross Bag School Handbag Kimruida Flowers Backpack Dragonfly Student Women body Embroidered (Tote Shoulder Boat Blue Purple Cozy shopper 4Colors Zipper Hjuns Bag Canvas wRaIxXunlinkErr) => {
    if (unlinkErr)Bali Storage Bag Handbag Beach Bag Rattan Beach Circular Bag Brown Basket Shopping Girls Woman Summer Light Braided Wicker Arvin87Lyly Straw 4wn6W8Twg throw unlinkErr;
  });
});

The above places a non-blocking call to fs.unlink() within the callback of fs.readFile() which guarantees the correct order of operations.

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