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Column Level Top K Statistics

This document is an addition to Statistics in Hive. It describes the support of collecting column level top K values for Hive tables (see HIVE-3421).

Scope

In addition to the partition statistics, column level top K values can also be estimated for Hive tables.
The name and top K values of the most skewed column is stored in the partition or non-partitioned table’s skewed information, if user did not specify skew. This works for both newly created and existing tables.
The algorithm for computing top K is based on this paper: Efficient Computation of Frequent and Top-k Elements in Data Streams.

Implementation

Top K statistics are gathered along with partition level statistics. The interface IStatsAggregator needs to add a method aggregateStatsTopK() that reads multiple entries from the temporary storage:

...

public interface IStatsAggregator {

...

  /**
 * This method aggregates top K statistics.
   *
 * */
  public List<String> aggregateStatsTopK(String keyPrefix, String statType);

...

}

Usage

Top K statistics are disabled by default. The user can set the boolean variable hive.stats.topk.collect to be true to enable computing top K and putting top K into skewed information.

set hive.stats.topk.collect=true;

The user can also specify the number of K by setting the integer variable hive.stats.topk.num, and the minimal row percentage that a value needs to hold to be in the top K result, by setting the float variable hive.stats.topk.minpercent.

set hive.stats.topk.num=8;
set hive.stats.topk.minpercent=5.0;

Another integer variable, hive.stats.topk.poolsize, specifies the number of values to be monitored while computing top K. The accuracy of top K estimate increases as this number gets larger.

set hive.stats.topk.poolsize=200;

Computing top K for a large number of partitions simultaneously can be stressful to memory. The user can specify the integer variable hive.stats.topk.maxpartnum for the maximal number of partitions to collect Top K. When this number is exceeded, top K will be disabled for all the remaining partitions.

set hive.stats.topk.maxpartnum=10;

In case of JDBC implementation of temporary stored statistics (eg. Derby or MySQL), the user should also specify the column type for top K, by setting the variable hive.stats.topk.column.type. By default, TEXT is used for MySQL, and LONG VARCHAR is used for Derby.

set hive.stats.topk.column.type=’LONG VARCHAR’;

Example

The user may set top K related variables at the beginning:

set hive.stats.topk.collect=true;
set hive.stats.topk.num=4;
set hive.stats.topk.minpercent=0;
set hive.stats.topk.poolsize=100;

Newly Created Tables

Suppose a partitioned table is created without skew, and data is inserted to its partitions:

CREATE TABLE table1 (key STRING, value STRING) PARTITIONED BY (ds STRING);
INSERT OVERWRITE TABLE table1 PARTITION (ds='2012-09-07') SELECT * FROM table_src;

Top K was computed for the partition while data was inserted. If the user issues the command:

DESCRIBE FORMATTED table1 partition (ds='2012-09-07');

then among the output, the following will be displayed:

...
Skewed Columns:         [value]                  
Skewed Values:          [[val_348], [val_230], [val_401], [val_70]]      
...

If the user issues the command:

DESCRIBE FORMATTED table1;

then among the output, there will not be skewed information, since table level top K is not available for partitioned tables.

For a non-partitioned table:

CREATE TABLE table1 (key STRING, value STRING);
INSERT OVERWRITE TABLE table1 SELECT * FROM table_src;

If the user issues the command:

DESCRIBE FORMATTED table1;

then among the output, the following will be displayed:

...
Skewed Columns:         [value]                  
Skewed Values:          [[val_348], [val_230], [val_401], [val_70]]      
...

When a table is created with skew:

set hive.internal.ddl.list.bucketing.enable=true;
CREATE TABLE table1 (key STRING, value STRING) PARTITIONED BY (ds STRING) SKEWED BY (key) on ('38', '49');
INSERT OVERWRITE TABLE table1 PARTITION (ds='2012-09-07') SELECT * FROM table_src;

Top K will not be collected, and the user specified skewed information remains. If the user issues the command:

DESCRIBE FORMATTED table1 partition (ds='2012-09-07');

then among the output, the following will be displayed:

...
Skewed Columns:         [key]                    
Skewed Values:          [[38], [49]]   
...

Existing Tables

Top K works the same way for ANALYZE commands as for INSERT commands.

Current Status (JIRA)

See HIVE-3421.

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