Is there some elegant way to pause and resume any other goroutine?


In my case, I have thousands of goroutines working simultaneously as work(). I also had a sync() goroutine. When sync starts, I need any other goroutine to pause for a while after sync job is done. Here is my code:

var channels []chan int
var channels_mutex sync.Mutex

func work() {
  channel := make(chan int, 1)
  channels = append(channels, channel)
  for {
    for {
      sync_stat := <- channel // blocked here
      if sync_stat == 0 { // if sync complete
    // Do some jobs
    if (some condition) {

func sync() {
  // do some sync

  for int i := 0; i != len(channels); i++ {
    channels[i] <- 0

Now the problem is, since <- is always blocking on read, every time goes to sync_stat := <- channel is blocking. I know if the channel was closed it won’t be blocked, but since I have to use this channel until work() exits, and I didn’t find any way to reopen a closed channel.

I suspect myself on a wrong way, so any help is appreciated. Is there some "elegant" way to pause and resume any other goroutine?


If I understand you correctly, you want N number of workers and one controller, which can pause, resume and stop the workers at will. The following code will do just that.

package main

import (

// Possible worker states.
const (
    Stopped = 0
    Paused  = 1
    Running = 2

// Maximum number of workers.
const WorkerCount = 1000

func main() {
    // Launch workers.
    var wg sync.WaitGroup
    wg.Add(WorkerCount + 1)

    workers := make([]chan int, WorkerCount)
    for i := range workers {
        workers[i] = make(chan int, 1)

        go func(i int) {
            worker(i, workers[i])

    // Launch controller routine.
    go func() {

    // Wait for all goroutines to finish.

func worker(id int, ws <-chan int) {
    state := Paused // Begin in the paused state.

    for {
        select {
        case state = <-ws:
            switch state {
            case Stopped:
                fmt.Printf("Worker %d: Stopped\n", id)
            case Running:
                fmt.Printf("Worker %d: Running\n", id)
            case Paused:
                fmt.Printf("Worker %d: Paused\n", id)

            // We use runtime.Gosched() to prevent a deadlock in this case.
            // It will not be needed of work is performed here which yields
            // to the scheduler.

            if state == Paused {

            // Do actual work here.

// controller handles the current state of all workers. They can be
// instructed to be either running, paused or stopped entirely.
func controller(workers []chan int) {
    // Start workers
    setState(workers, Running)

    // Pause workers.
    setState(workers, Paused)

    // Unpause workers.
    setState(workers, Running)

    // Shutdown workers.
    setState(workers, Stopped)

// setState changes the state of all given workers.
func setState(workers []chan int, state int) {
    for _, w := range workers {
        w <- state

Answered By – jimt

Answer Checked By – Katrina (GoLangFix Volunteer)

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