Publication
SIGIR 2011
Conference paper

Posting list intersection on multicore architectures

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Abstract

In current commercial Web search engines, queries are processed in the conjunctive mode, which requires the search engine to compute the intersection of a number of posting lists to determine the documents matching all query terms. In practice, the intersection operation takes a significant fraction of the query processing time, for some queries dominating the total query latency. Hence, efficient posting list intersection is critical for achieving short query latencies. In this work, we focus on improving the performance of posting list intersection by leveraging the compute capabilities of recent multicore systems. To this end, we consider various coarse-grained and fine-grained parallelization models for list intersection. Specifically, we present an algorithm that partitions the work associated with a given query into a number of small and independent tasks that are subsequently processed in parallel. Through a detailed empirical analysis of these alternative models, we demonstrate that exploiting parallelism at the finest-level of granularity is critical to achieve the best performance on multicore systems. On an eight-core system, the fine-grained parallelization method is able to achieve more than five times reduction in average query processing time while still exploiting the parallelism for high query throughput.

Date

24 Jul 2011

Publication

SIGIR 2011

Authors

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