I'm trying to find the fastest way to enqueue and dequeue items concurrently in Go.

There are some restrictions:

  • it needs to be unbounded
  • Memory allocation should be low
  • Multiple producers
  • (Single consumer)

This is what I've come up with so far:

package queue

import "sync"

type Queue struct {
    buffer []interface{}
    head   int           //index where items are poped
    tail   int           //index where items are pushed
    len    int           //current len of queue
    mod    int           //ring size
    lock   sync.RWMutex  

func New() *Queue {
    initialSize := 10
    return &Queue{
        buffer: make([]interface{}, initialSize),
        head:   0,
        tail:   0,
        len:    0,
        mod:    initialSize,

func (q *Queue) Push(item interface{}) {
    defer q.lock.Unlock()
    q.tail = ((q.tail + 1) % q.mod)
    if q.tail == q.head { //if head equals tail, the ring is too small, resize
        fillFactor := 2   //how much should the buffer grow

        newLen := q.mod * fillFactor
        newBuff := make([]interface{}, newLen)

        //unwind the current buffer on the new larger buffer
        for i := 0; i < q.mod; i++ {              
            buffIndex := (q.head + i) % q.mod
            newBuff[i] = q.buffer[buffIndex]
        //set the new buffer and reset head and tail
        q.buffer = newBuff
        q.head = 0
        q.tail = q.mod
        q.mod *= fillFactor
    q.buffer[q.tail] = item //place the item on the buffer

..//Length and Empty method removed

func (q *Queue) Pop() (interface{}, bool) {
    defer q.lock.Unlock()

    if q.len == 0 {  //early exit if no items

        return nil, false
    //move head to next ring index, consume it and reduce length
    q.head = ((q.head + 1) % q.mod)
    return q.buffer[q.head], true

func (q *Queue) PopMany(count int) ([]interface{}, bool) {
    defer q.lock.Unlock()
    if q.len == 0 {
        return nil, false

    if count >= q.len {
        count = q.len

    buffer := make([]interface{}, count)
    for i := 0; i < count; i++ {
        buffer[i] = q.buffer[(q.head+1+i)%q.mod]
    q.head = (q.head + count) % q.mod
    q.len -= count
    return buffer, true

This implementation works, and is currently the one that gives me the best sustained throughput. Known issues with this one is that it never down size the buffer when the length is shrinking.

I've tried the queue implemented in Go Data Structures, but it simply eats too much memory when under high load.

There is also a lock free ring buffer in the same package, but that one is bounded.

I figured as there is only a single consumer, it might be possible to make the Pop() lock free (?). as long as there are at least 1 item in the queue, it should be possible to pop it w/o locking, I think. The problem is when the producers cause a resize event to occur, then the Pop needs handle that somehow.

Any feedback is welcome, coding conventions, optimiation tricks etc. I'm fairly new to Go so there might be issues.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.