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What is Semaphore?

A semaphore either allows or disallows access to the resource, which depends on how it is set up.

In this Operating System (OS) tutorial, you will learn:

Characteristic of Semaphore

Here, are characteristic of a semaphore:

It is a mechanism that can be used to provide synchronization of tasks.

It is a low-level synchronization mechanism.

Semaphore will always hold a non-negative integer value.

Semaphore can be implemented using test operations and interrupts, which should be executed using file descriptors.

Types of Semaphores

The two common kinds of semaphores are

Counting semaphores

Binary semaphores.

Counting Semaphores

This type of Semaphore uses a count that helps task to be acquired or released numerous times. If the initial count = 0, the counting semaphore should be created in the unavailable state.

Counting Semaphores

Binary Semaphores

The binary semaphores are quite similar to counting semaphores, but their value is restricted to 0 and 1. In this type of semaphore, the wait operation works only if semaphore = 1, and the signal operation succeeds when semaphore= 0. It is easy to implement than counting semaphores.

Binary Semaphores

Example of Semaphore

The below-given program is a step by step implementation, which involves usage and declaration of semaphore.

Shared var mutex: semaphore = 1; Process i begin . . P(mutex); execute CS; V(mutex); . . End; Wait and Signal Operations in Semaphores

Wait for Operation

After the semaphore value is decreased, which becomes negative, the command is held up until the required conditions are satisfied.

Copy CodeP(S) { while (S<=0); S--; } Signal operation

This type of Semaphore operation is used to control the exit of a task from a critical section. It helps to increase the value of the argument by 1, which is denoted as V(S).

Copy CodeP(S) { S++; } Counting Semaphore vs. Binary Semaphore

Here, are some major differences between counting and binary semaphore:

Counting Semaphore Binary Semaphore

No mutual exclusion Mutual exclusion

Any integer value Value only 0 and 1

More than one slot Only one slot

Provide a set of Processes It has a mutual exclusion mechanism.

Difference between Semaphore vs. Mutex

Parameters Semaphore Mutex

Mechanism It is a type of signaling mechanism. It is a locking mechanism.

Data Type Semaphore is an integer variable. Mutex is just an object.

Modification The wait and signal operations can modify a semaphore. It is modified only by the process that may request or release a resource.

Resource management If no resource is free, then the process requires a resource that should execute wait operation. It should wait until the count of the semaphore is greater than 0. If it is locked, the process has to wait. The process should be kept in a queue. This needs to be accessed only when the mutex is unlocked.


Ownership Value can be changed by any process releasing or obtaining the resource. Object lock is released only by the process, which has obtained the lock on it.

Types Types of Semaphore are counting semaphore and binary semaphore and Mutex has no subtypes.

Operation Semaphore value is modified using wait () and signal () operation. Mutex object is locked or unlocked.

Resources Occupancy In case if the object is already locked, the process requesting resources waits and is queued by the system before lock is released.

Advantages of Semaphores

Here, are pros/benefits of using Semaphore:

It allows more than one thread to access the critical section

Semaphores are machine-independent.

Semaphores are implemented in the machine-independent code of the microkernel.

They do not allow multiple processes to enter the critical section.

As there is busy waiting in semaphore, there is never a wastage of process time and resources.

They are machine-independent, which should be run in the machine-independent code of the microkernel.

They allow flexible management of resources.

Here, are cons/drawback of semaphore

One of the biggest limitations of a semaphore is priority inversion.

The operating system has to keep track of all calls to wait and signal semaphore.

Their use is never enforced, but it is by convention only.

In order to avoid deadlocks in semaphore, the Wait and Signal operations require to be executed in the correct order.

Semaphore programming is a complicated, so there are chances of not achieving mutual exclusion.

Semaphore is more prone to programmer error.

It may cause deadlock or violation of mutual exclusion due to programmer error.


It is a mechanism that can be used to provide synchronization of tasks.

Counting semaphore uses a count that helps task to be acquired or released numerous times.

The binary semaphores are quite similar to counting semaphores, but their value is restricted to 0 and 1.

Signal semaphore operation is used to control the exit of a task from a critical section

Counting Semaphore has no mutual exclusion whereas Binary Semaphore has Mutual exclusion

Semaphore means a signaling mechanism whereas Mutex is a locking mechanism

Semaphore allows more than one thread to access the critical section

One of the biggest limitations of a semaphore is priority inversion.

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How Does Covenant Work With Example And Types?

What is Covenant?

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Explanation of Covenant

One of the major concerns for a lender is the complete recovery of the loan from the borrower. It has been observed that in cases where no restrictions are imposed on the borrower, there is a high probability that the management of the borrower company will completely ignore the lender’s interest and make confident decisions that will jeopardize their future debt servicing ability. So, covenants are tools lenders use to ensure their money is safe. These legal bindings ensure that the borrowers abide by certain pre-decided conditions, or the default clause will be triggered per the agreement. So, if the borrower breaches any of the covenants, the debt agreement allows the lender to demand repayment immediately.

In most cases, financial covenants are expressed in ratio ceiling or floor. For example, the debt-to-equity ratio shouldn’t breach the ceiling of 1.5x, or the interest coverage ratio shouldn’t breach the floor of 2.2x. However, covenants are not just restricted to financial ratios. They can cover many other aspects of company operations, such as maximum dividend payment, working capital requirement, retention of critical employees, etc.

How Does Covenant Work?

Now, let us look at how covenant works in a company setup.

Corporations often require money to expand their business or support their daily operations. In cases where they wish to raise funds at a lower cost, they opt for bond issuance or bank debt and pay interest on the borrowed money. In such a scenario, one of the primary concerns of the lender is the protection of their money against default.

So, the lenders then set some covenants that are legal agreements between the lender and the borrower. These impose pre-determined conditions before the issuance of the bonds. Now, if the borrower agrees with the terms and conditions of the debt agreement, the lender will only go ahead with the lending. In addition, the covenants take cognizance of the rating of the company and the debt instrument. So, these covenants add extra protection for the lender’s money.

For instance, the lender imposes a covenant that mandates that the debt-to-equity ratio shouldn’t exceed 1.5x. However, the borrower incurred heavy losses in the current year, resulting in equity erosion, pushing the debt-to-equity ratio beyond the threshold of 1.5x. The debt agreement states it is a breach and will trigger a default. So, in this case, the covenant acts as an early warning signal for the lender that the borrower’s business is in trouble which may result in liquidity problems. Hence, it is better to call back the borrowed amount immediately.

Example of Covenant

Let us take the example of ABC Inc., which is planning to raise $50 million through the issuance of bonds at the beginning of 2023. Now, the company has approached many lenders to discuss the terms and conditions of lending. As a result, some banks agreed to purchase the bonds after adequately evaluating the creditworthiness of ABC Inc. However, all the banks proposed the following covenants before buying the bonds.

These bonds (until their maturity) must be the senior most debt in the company’s capital structure.

The company’s interest coverage ratio (EBITDA/ Interest expense)must never fall below 3.0x

The company’s debt-to-equity ratio cannot exceed the ceiling of 1.2x


Now, let us take the example mentioned in the above section and determine whether any of the covenants have been breached if the following annual financial figures were reported at the end of 2023:

EBITDA = $10 million

Interest expense = $3 million

Outstanding debt = $60 million

Total equity = $55 million

Interest Coverage Ratio = EBITDA / Interest Expense

Interest Coverage Ratio = $10 million / $3 million

Interest Coverage ratio = 3.33x, which is more than the covenant of 3.0x

Again, we can calculate the debt-to-equity ratio of the company as follows:

Debt-to-Equity Ratio = Outstanding Debt / Total Equity

Debt-to-Equity Ratio = $60 million / $55 million

Debt-to-Equity Ratio  = 1.09x, which is below the covenant of 1.2x

So, none of the covenants has been breached.

Types of Covenant

1. Affirmative covenants: This type of clause requires the borrower to perform certain specific actions, and if the borrowers fail to do so, then it is in outright default. However, lenders may offer borrowers a grace period, and if the borrower fails to comply within that period, it considers a default. Some examples of affirmative covenants include furnishing audited financial statements to the lender at regular intervals, maintaining proper accounting books, etc.

2. Negative covenants: This type of covenant is imposed on the borrower to refrain from undertaking any such actions that may lead to the deterioration of their debt serviceability. Some examples of negative covenants include maintenance of dividend payout below 50%, maintenance of gearing below 3.0x, etc.


So, it can be seen that covenants are significant from the point of view of the lenders. Covenants impose discipline on companies and offer better control to the lenders. However, it should be noted that too many covenants may end up restricting the company’s operations, which can be detrimental to its revenue growth and profitability.

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Sqlite Data Types With Example: Int, Text, Numeric, Real, Blob

Data types in SQLite are different compared to other database management system. In SQLite, you can declare data types normally, but you still can store any value in any data type.

In this tutorial, you will learn-

SQLite is typed less. There are no data types, you can store any type of data you like in any column. This is called dynamic types.

In static types, like in other database management systems, if you declared a column with a data type integer, you can only insert values of data type integer. However, in dynamic types like in SQLite, the type of the column is determined by the value inserted. And then SQLite stores that value depending on its type.

SQLite Storage Classes

In SQLite there are different storage methods depending on the type of value, these different storage methods are called storage classes in SQLite.

The following are the storage classes available in SQLite:

NULL – this storage class is used to store any NULL value.

INTEGER – any numeric value is stored as a signed integer value (It can hold both positive and negative integer values). The INTEGER values in SQLite are stored in either 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, or 8 bytes of storage depending on the value of the number.

REAL – this storage class is used to store the floating point values, and they are stored in an 8-bytes of storage.

TEXT – stores text strings. It also supports different encoding like UTF-8, UTF-16 BE, or UTF-26LE.

BLOB – used to store large files, like images or text files. The value is stored as byte array the same as the input value.

SQLite Affinity Type

Type affinity is the recommended type of data stored in a column. However, you still can store any type of data as you wish, these types are recommended not required.

These types were introduced in SQLite to maximize the compatibility between SQLite and other database management system.

Any column declared in an SQLite database is assigned a type affinity depending on it declared data type. Here the lift of type affinities in SQLite:






Here’s how SQLite determines the affinity of the column from its declared data type:

INTEGER affinity is assigned if the declared type contains the string “INT“.

TEXT affinity is assigned, if the column contains on its data type one of the following strings “TEXT“, “CHAR, or “CLOB“. For example, the type VARCHAR will be assigned the TEXT affinity.

BLOB affinity is assigned if the column has no type specified or the data type is a BLOB.

REAL affinity is assigned if the type contains one of the following strings “DOUB“, “REAL, or “FLOAT“.

NUMERIC affinity is assigned for any other data type.

There is also a table on the same page showing some examples for the mapping between SQLite data types and their affinities determined by these rules:

Mapping between SQLite data types and affinities

Examples of Storing Data types in SQLite: Storing number with SQLite integer:

Any column of data type contains the “INT” word, it will be assigned an INTEGER type affinity. It will be stored in an INTEGER storage class.

All the following data types are assigned as an INTEGER type affinity:




INTEGER type affinity in SQLite can hold any assigned integer number (positive or negative) from 1 byte to maximum 8 bytes.

Storing numbers with SQLite REAL:

REAL numbers are the number with double floating points precision. SQLite stored real numbers as 8 bytes’ array. Here is the list of data types in SQLite that you can use to store REAL numbers:





Storing large data with SQLite BLOB:

There is only one way to store large files into a SQLite database, and it is using the BLOB data type. This data type is used to store large files like images, files (from any type), etc. The file is converted into bytes array and then stored in the same size as the input file.

Storing SQLite Booleans:

SQLite doesn’t have a separate BOOLEAN storage class. However, the BOOLEAN values are stored as INTEGERS with values 0 (as false) or 1 (as true).

Storing SQLite dates and times:

You can declare date or date times in SQLite using one of the following data types:





Note that, there is no separate DATE or DATETIME storage class in SQLite. Instead, any values declared with one of the previous data types are stored on a storage class depending on the date format of the inserted value as following:

TEXT – if you inserted the date value in the format of the ISO8601 string (“YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS.SSS”).

REAL – if you inserted the date value in the Julian day numbers, the number of days since noon in Greenwich on November 24, 4714 B.C. Then the date value would be stored as REAL.

INTEGER as Unix Time, the number of seconds since 1970-01-01 00:00:00 UTC.


SQLite supports a broad range of data types. But, at the same time, it is very flexible regarding data types. You can put any value type in any data type. SQLite also introduced some new concepts in data types like type affinity and storage classes, unlike other database management systems.

Defintion, Types, Example, How To Works?

What is Equity Financing

Equity financing is a process of raising capital by selling shares of the Company to the public, institutional investors, or financial Institutions.

Equity financing could be the perfect solution for you. It allows you to raise capital without debt by selling a portion of your business to investors. Here we provide examples of the types of equity financing available to you.

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Example of Equity Financing

An Entrepreneur started the company ABC with an initial capital of $ 10,000. At the start of the Company, he owns 100% of the equity in the Company. After a few initial years of starting, he is seeking new funds for the growth of the Company. He sells 50% of the equity of the Company at a valuation of $ 100,000. A venture capitalist or an angel investor will receive 50% equity in the Company by investing $ 50,000, and the entrepreneur’s stake will be reduced to 50%. However, he invested only $ 10,000 in the Company at the beginning.

Thus, Equity financing and the amount of stake each investor owns depends on the time and valuation of investments in the Company.

Types of Equity Financing

A Company can have different classes of shares; Equity financing does not only involve financing by common equity but through other mediums as well:

The Companies issue different classes of shares, usually large enterprises:

Class A shares: Investors get ownership, i.e., voting rights and dividend.

Class B shares: Investors get ownership (voting rights) but no dividend.

Preference shares: Investors receive a dividend (in some cases higher or guaranteed dividend) but no ownership.

Differential voting rights shares: Investors get differential voting rights, i.e., 2 shares owned by the investor will get 1 vote, and to compensate for this differential voting right, they receive a higher dividend than the common equity investors.

Sources of Equity Financing

When a new business starts, the owner invests the funds by selling his personal assets like land and property or cash assets. However, as the business grows and the need for financing increases, the funds are taken from external sources.

Various investors at different stages of the Company’s growth investments in the Company, and are mentioned below:

1. Angel Investors

Angel investors are typically the first investors apart from the business owner or founder. They are usually wealthy individuals and friends/family of the business owner. They provide financial backing at an early stage of the business at favorable terms and do not usually get involved in the management of the business. Angel investors generally take out their investments at higher returns once the Company seeks funds from venture capitalists.

2. Venture Capitalists 3. Retail Investors/IPOs 4. Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is another way. Companies can raise funds from a group of investors in small amounts. Each investor invests a small amount in the business through a crowdfunding campaign the Company runs. The investors are generally a group of angel investors who believe in the product and the founders of the Company and would like to fund the initial setup of the business.


1. Companies seeking will typically create a business plan that outlines their goals and objectives.

2. Companies will then identify potential investors and present their plans.

3. Investors will evaluate the company’s plan and decide whether to invest.

4. If the investors agree to invest, they will provide the company with capital in exchange for equity.

Advantages of Equity Financing

The company does not have enough cash, collateral, or resources to raise funds from debt financing; hence equity financing is a good source of funds for the entrepreneur as the investors would take the risk of the business along with the founders.

Investors get ownership of the Company. They get better returns than other investment vehicles, either from increased share prices or dividends paid by the Company.

Loss of control: As the Company adds new investors, the founders’ reduced shareholding may lead to a potential conflict of interest and loss of control of their own Company. The active involvement of investors in the management of the Company may also create conflicts in the way of doing business.

Time and effort: Potential investors spend a lot of time in the Company’s due diligence before investing. They look for a business plan, sales and profit forecasting, and market conditions and must ensure their investment will be safe, secure, and profitable. Thus, it is time-consuming for entrepreneurs who are out seeking funds and also focussing on their business.


Equity financing is a mode of financing for the Company where it takes funds from the investors by selling shares. The Company can issue a different variety of shares to different investors. However, investors understand that such investments do not offer fixed returns like debt financing, where they borrow funds for a stipulated time and at predefined interest rates.


Q: What are the different types?

A: The different types of equity financing include venture capital, angel investors, and public offerings.

Q: What are the benefits of equity financing?

A: This can benefit long-term growth, allowing companies to access capital without debt.

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What Is Alpha Testing? Process, Example

Alpha Testing

Alpha Testing is a type of software testing performed to identify bugs before releasing the software product to the real users or public. It is a type of acceptance testing. The main objective of alpha testing is to refine the software product by finding and fixing the bugs that were not discovered through previous tests.

This testing is referred to as an alpha testing only because it is done early on, near the end of the development of the software, and before Beta Testing. Check Differences between Alpha testing and Beta testing

Alpha testing is typically performed by in-house software engineers or QA staff. It is the final testing stage before the software is released into the real world.

Who is involved in Alpha testing?

Alpha testing has two phases,

The first phase of testing is done by in-house developers. They either use hardware-assisted debuggers or debugger software. The aim to catch bugs quickly. Usually while alpha testing, a tester will come across to plenty of bugs, crashes, missing features, and docs.

While the second phase of alpha testing is done by software QA staff, for additional testing in an environment. It involves both black box and White Box Testing.

So, alpha testing can be envisioned as an online application that is not completely ready for the usage but has been opened up to get some initial feedback.

Alpha Testing Process Example

Usually, an alpha testing takes place in the test lab environment on a separate system. In this technique, project manager teams up with the developer to define specific goals for alpha testing, and to integrate the results into evolving project plans.

As such alpha testing is done on a prototype, in-depth reliability testing, installation testing, and documentation testing can be ignored.

A good alpha test must have a well-defined Test Plan with comprehensive test cases. Various activities involved in alpha testing are logging defects, fixing defects, retesting, several iterations, etc.

Although Alpha testing is not completely functional, QA team must ensure that whatever is on hand should be thoroughly tested, especially those which has to be sent to the customer.

For best practice, the QA team should gather early all additional information like usability feedback on an alpha stage storage code, look and feel of the software, navigation scheme, etc.

Also, e-mail to the customer citing all the details about the test is recommended to make the customer aware of the current condition of the software.

How to do Alpha Testing

To do Alpha Testing efficiently for software testing, we need to first review the design specification and functional requirements, then develop a comprehensive test plan and test cases, after that execute the test plan in order to find log defects and fix those defects and finally retest once the issues are solved for smooth functioning of software.

Advantage of Alpha testing

Better insight about the software’s reliability at its early stages

Free up your team for other projects

Reduce delivery time to market

Early feedback helps to improve software quality


In Software Engineering, Alpha testing is an early version of a software product

The objective of Alpha testing is to involve customer deep into the process of development

A good Alpha test must have a well-defined test plan with comprehensive test cases

It gives better insight about the software’s reliability at its early stages

What Is Company Culture? Four Primary Types

Company Culture

The attitudes and behaviors governing how employees and executives engage and manage outside contractual relationships in a company

Written by

Helen Wale

Published March 1, 2023

Updated February 21, 2023

What is Company Culture?

Company culture reflects the attitudes and behaviors that govern how employees and executives engage and manage outside contractual relationships in a company. Corporate culture is typically assumed rather than explicitly stated, and it evolves gradually over time as a result of the aggregate qualities of the individuals the company recruits.

The culture of a company will be represented in its dress code, operating hours, office layout, staff incentives, turnover, recruitment selections, customer treatment, customer satisfaction, and all other aspects of operations.

A successful company must work to adopt a culture that is founded on a set of firmly regarded and broadly accepted ideas that are backed by strategies and processes. Three things happen when a company embodies a strong culture: (1) Employees understand how top-level management expects them to react to any circumstance, (2) They feel that the anticipated response is the appropriate response, and (3) They understand that they will be rewarded for embodying the company’s values.

Key Highlights

The attitudes and practices that control how workers and executives engage and manage outside contractual ties in a firm are reflected in company culture. Company culture is usually assumed rather than explicitly defined, and it evolves gradually over time as a result of the collective characteristics of the people the company hires.

A company’s culture will be reflected in its dress code, operating hours, office layout, employee incentives, turnover, recruiting selections, customer treatment, and customer satisfaction, as well as all other elements of operations.

Types of Company Culture

The four common types of company cultures include:

1. Advocacy culture 2. Clan culture

Clan cultures, sometimes known as “family cultures,” are collaborative, action-oriented, and adaptable to change. Employee happiness and work satisfaction are key goals in companies with a highly collaborative work environment. Such organizations cherish each individual and encourage employee input and openness.

3. Hierarchy culture

Companies with a hierarchical culture adhere to conventional business procedures, with a distinct line between employer and employees. They work in a risk-averse setting with well-defined procedures. Such kinds of enterprises usually adhere to a strict structure, including set business hours and/or a dress code. The emphasis is on day-to-day activities as opposed to employee interactions or feedback.

4. Market culture

Profit margins and market dominance are priorities for companies with a market culture. It is the most competitive and competitive business culture kind. They are results-driven companies that prioritize business performance and the bottom line over staff satisfaction. Such businesses are concerned with achieving targets, reaching objectives, and achieving results.

Company Culture Example: Google

An example of a company with notable company culture is Google. Google’s culture is a good example of a healthy workplace. Its personnel are given the opportunity to work with cutting-edge technology and are actively engaged in addressing the world’s major challenges through the most application of technology. The company constantly monitors employee satisfaction and contentment in addition to giving incentives such as free meals, fun activities, napping pods, and on-site physicians.

Google accommodates everything within one place – the Google Workspace – from expert stylists to gyms and swimming pools, from essential napping pods to on-site health and wellness facilities, from console games to foosball and ping pong, etc. It’s been successful in building an innovative and pleasant work environment for its employees. The tech giant promotes organizational performance and productivity and allows employees to escape uninspiring workstations or a formal corporate atmosphere.

Toxic Company Cultures

Toxic company culture includes deviant behaviors, conflict, internal strife, poor communication, power disputes, and low morale. It also does not put employee well-being first in its activities and policies. The key elements of a toxic workplace include, but may not be limited to:

High employee turnover

Notably low employee morale

Discord among employees

Lack of effective communication

Changing the Company Culture

Any organization’s culture is inextricably linked to its objectives. As a result, senior management can exert influence on the existing company culture to mold it into a more refined culture to change the directives that define it. It can be done through the following steps:

The company’s top management can revisit the organization’s core values and mission. A good corporate culture is the consequence of values that have been carefully considered and are consistently upheld. Hence, to alter the culture, the values should be revisited and redefined, where necessary.

After redefining and refining the values, the organization can begin looking at setting culture goals, which will allow for the upholding of the new values and envisaged workplace environment.

The next step for consideration when looking to alter the culture of a company is to examine the elements that make up the current company culture and determine what changes need to be addressed to accommodate the new and refined company values and culture objectives.

After considering all the key factors, the company can then begin to map out a detailed plan to allow for the alteration or improvement of the existing company culture.

Finally, the next step would be ongoing progress monitoring to ensure that the implementation of the plan towards changing the company culture is producing the desired outcomes.

Examples of changing company culture can include making changes to the office space itself (redesigning) or establishing a new work-life balance for employees and/or providing incentives for employees.

Other Company Culture Considerations

Companies play a significant role in sustaining a strong culture, beginning with recruitment processes and the selection of applicants who share the company’s belief systems and flourish in that culture. It continues to fostering alignment, training, and performance management initiatives that highlight and reaffirm the company’s values. Company culture also ensures that appropriate rewards and incentives are given to employees who fully embody the entity’s principles.

Additional Resources

Human Resource Management

Mission Statement

Objectives and Key Results (KPI)

See all management & strategy resources

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