Incremental Text Indexing for Fast Disk-Based Search
ACM Transactions on the Web
Real-time search requires to incrementally ingest content updates and almost immediately make them searchable while serving search queries at low latency. This is currently feasible for datasets of moderate size by fully maintaining the index in the main memory of multiple machines. Instead, disk-based methods for incremental index maintenance substantially increase search latency with the index fragmented across multiple disk locations. For the support of fast search over disk-based storage,
... take a fresh look at incremental text indexing in the context of current architectural features. We introduce a greedy method called Selective Range Flush (SRF) to contiguously organize the index over disk blocks and dynamically update it at low cost. We show that SRF requires substantial experimental effort to tune specific parameters for performance efficiency. Subsequently, we propose the Unified Range Flush (URF) method, which is conceptually simpler than SRF, achieves similar or better performance with fewer parameters and less tuning, and is amenable to I/O complexity analysis. We implement interesting variations of the two methods in the Proteus prototype search engine that we developed and do extensive experiments with three different Web datasets of size up to 1TB. Across different systems, we show that our methods offer search latency that matches or reduces up to half the lowest achieved by existing disk-based methods. In comparison to an existing method of comparable search latency on the same system, our methods reduce by a factor of 2.0-2.4 the I/O part of build time and by 21-24% the total build time. ACM Reference Format: Giorgos Margaritis and Stergios V. Anastasiadis. 2014. Incremental text indexing for fast disk-based search.