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Subject [CONF] Apache Mahout > Parallel Frequent Pattern Mining
Date Thu, 04 Aug 2011 08:00:00 GMT
Space: Apache Mahout (
Page: Parallel Frequent Pattern Mining (

Change Comment:
Reverted from v. 18

Edited by Lance Norskog:
Mahout has a Top K Parallel FPGrowth Implementation. Its based on the paper []
with some optimisations in mining the data.

Given a huge transaction list, the algorithm finds all unique features(sets of field values)
and eliminates those features whose frequency in the whole dataset is less that minSupport.
Using these remaining features N, we find the top K closed patterns for each of them, generating
a total of NxK patterns. FPGrowth Algorithm is a generic implementation, we can use any Object
type to denote a feature. Current implementation requires you to use a String as the object
type. You may implement a version for any object by creating Iterators, Convertors and TopKPatternWritable
for that particular object. For more information please refer the package org.apache.mahout.fpm.pfpgrowth.convertors.string
 FPGrowth<String> fp = new FPGrowth<String>();
 Set<String> features = new HashSet<String>();
     new StringRecordIterator(new FileLineIterable(new File(input), encoding, false), pattern),
          new StringRecordIterator(new FileLineIterable(new File(input), encoding, false),
pattern), minSupport),
        new StringOutputConvertor(new SequenceFileOutputCollector<Text, TopKStringPatterns>(writer))
* The first argument is the iterator of transaction in this case its Iterator<List<String>>
* The second argument is the output of generateFList function, which returns the frequent
items and their frequencies from the given database transaction iterator
* The third argument is the minimum Support of the pattern to be generated
* The fourth argument is the maximum number of patterns to be mined for each feature
* The fifth argument is the set of features for which the frequent patterns has to be mined
* The last argument is an output collector which takes \[key, value\] of Feature and TopK
Patterns of the format \[String, List<Pair<List<String>, Long>>\] and writes
them to the appropriate writer class which takes care of storing the object, in this case
in a Sequence File Output format

h2. Running Frequent Pattern Growth via command line

The command line launcher for string transaction data org.apache.mahout.fpm.pfpgrowth.FPGrowthDriver
has other features including specifying the regex pattern for spitting a string line of a
transaction into the constituent features.

Input files have to be in the following format.

<optional document id>TAB<TOKEN1>SPACE<TOKEN2>SPACE....

instead of tab you could use , or \| as the default tokenization is done using a java Regex
pattern {code}[,\t]*[,|\t][ ,\t]*{code}
You can override this parameter to parse your log files or transaction files (each line is
a transaction.) The FPGrowth algorithm mines the top K frequently occurring sets of items
and their counts from the given input data

$MAHOUT_HOME/core/src/test/resources/retail.dat is a sample dataset in this format. As the
FPGrowth algorithm has non-trivial memory requirements, first we will create a small dataset
Other sample files are accident.dat.gz from [].&nbsp;
As a quick test, try this:

head -1000 < core/src/test/resources/retail.dat > /tmp/retail_1k.dat
bin/mahout fpg \
     -i /tmp/retail_1k.dat \
     -o patterns \
     -k 50 \
     -method sequential \
     -regex '[\ ]' \
     -s 2

The minimum Support parameter is the minimum number of times a pattern or a feature needs
to occur in the dataset so that it is included in the patterns generated. You can speed up
the process by having a large value of s. There are cases where you will have less than k
patterns for a particular feature as the rest don't for qualify the minimum support criteria

Note that the input to the algorithm, could be uncompressed or compressed gz file or even
a directory containing any number of such files.
We modified the regex to use space to split the token. Note that input regex string is escaped.

h2. Running Parallel FPGrowth

Running parallel FPGrowth is as easy as adding changing the flag \-method mapreduce and adding
the number of groups parameter e.g. \-g 20 for 20 groups. First, let's run the above sample
test in map-reduce mode:
bin/mahout fpg \
     -i /tmp/retail_1k.dat \
     -o patterns \
     -k 50 \
     -method mapreduce \
     -g 20
     -regex '[\ ]' \
     -s 2
The above test takes 20 seconds on the author's laptop, v.s. 30 seconds in the sequential

Now, let's run some full-size datasets. Use the complete retail.dat file in the Mahout source.
A much more ambitious task is a file called accidents.dat.gz from [|].

Get accidents.dat.gz and place it on your hdfs in a folder named accidents. Then, run the
hadoop version of the FPGrowth job:
bin/mahout fpg \
     -i accidents \
     -o patterns \
     -k 50 \
     -method mapreduce \
     -g 10 \
     -regex '[\ ]' \
     -s 2

OR to run a dataset of this size in sequential mode on a single machine let's give Mahout
a lot more memory and only keep features with more than 300 members:
export MAHOUT_HEAPSIZE=-Xmx5000m
bin/mahout fpg \
     -i accidents \
     -o patterns \
     -k 50 \
     -method sequential \
     -regex '[\ ]' \
     -s 2

Note that accidents.dat has 340 unique features. So we chose \-g 10 to split the transactions
across 10 shards where 34 patterns are mined from each shard. (Note: g doesnt need to be exactly
divisible.) The Algorithm takes care of calculating the split. For better performance in large
datasets try not to mine for more than 20-25 features per shard. So adjust the groups accordingly.

The numGroups parameter in FPGrowthJob specifies the number of groups into which transactions
have to be decomposed.
The numTreeCacheEntries parameter specifies the number of generated conditional FP-Trees to
be kept in memory so that subsequent operations do not to regenerate them. Increasing this
number increases the memory consumption but might improve speed until a certain point. This
depends entirely on the dataset in question. A value of 5-10 is recommended for mining up
to top 100 patterns for each feature.

h2. Viewing the results
The output will be dumped to a SequenceFile in the frequentpatterns directory in Text=>TopKStringPatterns
format. Run this command to see a few of the Frequent Patterns:
bin/mahout seqdumper \
     -s patterns/frequentpatterns/part-?-00000 \
     -n 4
or replace -n 4 with -c for the count of patterns.

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