Accelerating SPARQL Queries and Analytics on RDF Data

  • Razen Al-Harbi

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


The complexity of SPARQL queries and RDF applications poses great challenges on distributed RDF management systems. SPARQL workloads are dynamic and con- sist of queries with variable complexities. Hence, systems that use static partitioning su↵er from communication overhead for workloads that generate excessive communi- cation. Concurrently, RDF applications are becoming more sophisticated, mandating analytical operations that extend beyond SPARQL queries. Being primarily designed and optimized to execute SPARQL queries, which lack procedural capabilities, exist- ing systems are not suitable for rich RDF analytics. This dissertation tackles the problem of accelerating SPARQL queries and RDF analytics on distributed shared-nothing RDF systems. First, a distributed RDF en- gine, coined AdPart, is introduced. AdPart uses lightweight hash partitioning for sharding triples using their subject values; rendering its startup overhead very low. The locality-aware query optimizer of AdPart takes full advantage of the partition- ing to (i) support the fully parallel processing of join patterns on subjects and (ii) minimize data communication for general queries by applying hash distribution of intermediate results instead of broadcasting, wherever possible. By exploiting hash- based locality, AdPart achieves better or comparable performance to systems that employ sophisticated partitioning schemes. To cope with workloads dynamism, AdPart is extended to dynamically adapt to workload changes. AdPart monitors the data access patterns and dynamically redis- tributes and replicates the instances of the most frequent patterns among workers.Consequently, the communication cost for future queries is drastically reduced or even eliminated. Experiments with synthetic and real data verify that AdPart starts faster than all existing systems and gracefully adapts to the query load. Finally, to support and accelerate rich RDF analytical tasks, a vertex-centric RDF analytics framework is proposed. The framework, named SPARTex, bridges the gap between RDF and graph processing. To do so, SPARTex: (i) implements a generic SPARQL operator as a vertex-centric program. The operator is coupled with an optimizer that generates e cient execution plans. (ii) It allows SPARQL to invoke vertex-centric programs as stored procedures. Finally, (iii) it provides a unified in- memory data store that allows the persistence of intermediate results. Consequently, SPARTex can e ciently support RDF analytical tasks consisting of complex pipeline of operators.
Date of AwardNov 9 2016
Original languageEnglish (US)
Awarding Institution
  • Computer, Electrical and Mathematical Science and Engineering
SupervisorPanos Kalnis (Supervisor)


  • RDF
  • Distributed Databases
  • Parallele Processing
  • Query Optimization
  • Adaptive Partitioning

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