Full Text Search In PostgreSQL
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Full Text Search In PostgreSQL


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A comparison of different solutions for full-text search in web applications using PostgreSQL and other technology. Presented at the PostgreSQL Conference West, in Seattle, October 2009.

A comparison of different solutions for full-text search in web applications using PostgreSQL and other technology. Presented at the PostgreSQL Conference West, in Seattle, October 2009.



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http://rofaidaawad.wordpress.com 596
http://www.scoop.it 457
http://www.chebyte.com 312
http://www.slideshare.net 132
http://localhost:1970 25
https://twitter.com 9 8
http://blog.hashdog.com 8
http://www.techgig.com 6
http://localhost 5
http://www.twylah.com 5
url_unknown 4
http://kowidi.com 3
http://www.365dailyjournal.com 2
http://www.hashdog.com 2
http://itnlu.info 2
http://a0.twimg.com 2 1
http://www.m.techgig.com 1
http://s.deeeki.com 1
http://www.google.com 1
https://www.linkedin.com 1



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  • To replicate what your doing on slide 17:

    CREATE table posts (
    id int primary key,
    body text,
    title varchar (250),
    tags varchar (150)
    INSERT INTO posts (id, body, title, tags) VALUES (1, 'postgresql & performance rank me high', 'postgresql', 'performance');
    INSERT INTO posts (id, body, title, tags) VALUES (2, 'Some post ranks 2nd best?', 'postgresql performance', 'performance');
    INSERT INTO posts (id, body, title, tags) VALUES (3, 'still match lowest rank ?', 'postgresql','performance');
    INSERT INTO posts (id, body, title, tags) VALUES (4, 'do not match', 'mysql','123456789');

    SELECT * FROM posts ;

    SELECT * FROM posts
    WHERE to_tsvector (title||''||body||''||tags)
    @@ to_tsquery('postgresql & performance');

    Only returns ID#2 why does #1 and #3 above not match.
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  • Thank you for your presentation!!!!!! Very thank you
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  • Many thanks for sharing it :)
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    Hope you are in good health. My name is AMANDA . I am a single girl, Am looking for reliable and honest person. please have a little time for me. Please reach me back amanda_n14144@yahoo.com so that i can explain all about myself .
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  • thank you for that very compact tutorial. I would have wasted much time without it. greetings from vienna! :) (bzw: andrès is right: I also HAD TO use to_tsquery() - without that it didn't work with postgres 9.1)
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Full Text Search In PostgreSQL Full Text Search In PostgreSQL Presentation Transcript

  • Practical full-text search in PostgreSQL Bill Karwin PostgreSQL Conference West 09 • 2009/10/17
  • Me • 20+ years experience • Application/SDK developer • Support, Training, Proj Mgmt • C, Java, Perl, PHP • SQL maven • MySQL, PostgreSQL, InterBase • Zend Framework • Oracle, SQL Server, IBM DB2, SQLite • Community contributor
  • Full Text Search
  • Text search • Web applications demand speed • Let’s compare 5 solutions for text search
  • Sample data • StackOverflow.com Posts • Data dump exported September 2009 • 1.2 million tuples • ~850 MB
  • StackOverflow ER diagram
  • Naive Searching Some people, when confronted with a problem, think “I know, I’ll use regular expressions.” Now they have two problems. — Jamie Zawinsky
  • Performance issue • LIKE with wildcards: time: 91 sec SELECT * FROM Posts WHERE body LIKE ‘%postgresql%’ • POSIX regular expressions: SELECT * FROM Posts WHERE body ~ ‘postgresql’ time: 105 sec
  • Why so slow? CREATE TABLE telephone_book ( full_name VARCHAR(50) ); CREATE INDEX name_idx ON telephone_book (full_name); INSERT INTO telephone_book VALUES (‘Riddle, Thomas’), (‘Thomas, Dean’);
  • Why so slow? • Search for all with last name “Thomas” uses SELECT * FROM telephone_book index WHERE full_name LIKE ‘Thomas%’ • Search for all with first name “Thomas” SELECT * FROM telephone_book WHERE full_name LIKE ‘%Thomas’ doesn’t use index
  • Indexes don’t help searching for substrings
  • Accuracy issue • Irrelevant or false matching words ‘one’, ‘money’, ‘prone’, etc.: body LIKE ‘%one%’ • Regular expressions in PostgreSQL support escapes for word boundaries: body ~ ‘yoney’
  • Solutions • Full-Text Indexing in the RDBMS • Sphinx Search • Apache Lucene • Inverted Index • Search Engine Service
  • PostgreSQL Text-Search
  • PostgreSQL Text-Search • Since PostgreSQL 8.3 • TSVECTOR to represent text data • TSQUERY to represent search predicates • Special indexes
  • PostgreSQL Text-Search: Basic Querying SELECT * FROM Posts WHERE to_tsvector(title || ‘ ’ || body || ‘ ’ || tags) @@ to_tsquery(‘postgresql & performance’); text-search matching operator
  • PostgreSQL Text-Search: Basic Querying SELECT * FROM Posts WHERE title || ‘ ’ || body || ‘ ’ || tags @@ ‘postgresql & performance’; time with no index: 8 min 2 sec
  • PostgreSQL Text-Search: Add TSVECTOR column ALTER TABLE Posts ADD COLUMN PostText TSVECTOR; UPDATE Posts SET PostText = to_tsvector(‘english’, title || ‘ ’ || body || ‘ ’ || tags);
  • Special index types • GIN (generalized inverted index) • GiST (generalized search tree)
  • PostgreSQL Text-Search: Indexing CREATE INDEX PostText_GIN ON Posts USING GIN(PostText); time: 39 min 36 sec
  • PostgreSQL Text-Search: Querying SELECT * FROM Posts WHERE PostText @@ ‘postgresql & performance’; time with index: 20 milliseconds
  • PostgreSQL Text-Search: Keep TSVECTOR in sync CREATE TRIGGER TS_PostText BEFORE INSERT OR UPDATE ON Posts FOR EACH ROW EXECUTE PROCEDURE tsvector_update_trigger( ostText, P ‘english’, title, body, tags);
  • Lucene
  • Lucene • Full-text indexing and search engine • Apache Project since 2001 • Apache License • Java implementation • Ports exist for C, Perl, Ruby, Python, PHP, etc.
  • Lucene: How to use 1. Add documents to index 2. Parse query 3. Execute query
  • Lucene: Creating an index • Programmatic solution in Java... time: 8 minutes 55 seconds
  • Lucene: Indexing String url = "jdbc:postgresql:stackoverflow"; Properties props = new Properties(); props.setProperty("user", "postgres"); run any SQL query Class.forName("org.postgresql.Driver"); Connection con = DriverManager.getConnection(url, props); Statement stmt = con.createStatement(); String sql = "SELECT PostId, Title, Body, Tags FROM Posts"; ResultSet rs = stmt.executeQuery(sql); open Lucene Date start = new Date(); index writer IndexWriter writer = new IndexWriter(FSDirectory.open(INDEX_DIR), new StandardAnalyzer(Version.LUCENE_CURRENT), true, IndexWriter.MaxFieldLength.LIMITED);
  • Lucene: Indexing loop over SQL result while (rs.next()) { Document doc = new Document(); doc.add(new Field("PostId", rs.getString("PostId"), Field.Store.YES, Field.Index.NO)); doc.add(new Field("Title", rs.getString("Title"), Field.Store.YES, Field.Index.ANALYZED)); doc.add(new Field("Body", rs.getString("Body"), Field.Store.YES, Field.Index.ANALYZED)); doc.add(new Field("Tags", rs.getString("Tags"), Field.Store.YES, Field.Index.ANALYZED)); writer.addDocument(doc); each row is } a Document writer.optimize(); writer.close(); with four Fields finish and close index
  • Lucene: Querying • Parse a Lucene query define fields String[] fields = new String[3]; fields[0] = “title”; fields[1] = “body”; fields[2] = “tags”; Query q = new MultiFieldQueryParser(fields, new StandardAnalyzer()).parse(‘performance’); • Execute the query parse search query Searcher s = new IndexSearcher(indexName); Hits h = s.search(q); time: 80 milliseconds
  • Sphinx Search
  • Sphinx Search • Embedded full-text search engine • Started in 2001 • GPLv2 license • Good database integration
  • Sphinx Search: How to use 1. Edit configuration file 2. Index the data 3. Query the index 4. Issues
  • Sphinx Search: sphinx.conf source stackoverflowsrc { type = pgsql sql_host = localhost sql_user = postgres sql_pass = xxxx sql_db = stackoverflow sql_query = SELECT PostId, Title, Body, Tags FROM Posts sql_query_info = SELECT * FROM Posts WHERE PostId=$id }
  • Sphinx Search: sphinx.conf index stackoverflow { source = stackoverflowsrc path = /opt/local/var/db/sphinx/stackoverflow }
  • Sphinx Search: Building index indexer -c sphinx.conf stackoverflow collected 1242365 docs, 720.5 MB sorted 88.3 Mhits, 100.0% done total 1242365 docs, 720452944 bytes total 357.647 sec, 2014423.75 bytes/sec, 3473.72 docs/sec time: 5 min 57 sec
  • Sphinx Search: Querying index search -c sphinx.conf -i stackoverflow -b “sql & performance” time: 8 milliseconds
  • Sphinx Search: Issues • Index updates are as expensive as rebuilding the index from scratch • Maintain “main” index plus “delta” index for recent changes • Merge indexes periodically • Not all data fits into this model
  • Inverted Index
  • Inverted index searchable words Posts Tags TagTypes intersection of words / Posts
  • Inverted index: Updated ER Diagram
  • Inverted index: Data definition CREATE TABLE TagTypes ( TagId SERIAL PRIMARY KEY, Tag VARCHAR(50) NOT NULL ); CREATE UNIQUE INDEX TagTypes_Tag_index ON TagTypes(Tag); CREATE TABLE Tags ( PostId INT NOT NULL, TagId INT NOT NULL, PRIMARY KEY (PostId, TagId), FOREIGN KEY (PostId) REFERENCES Posts (PostId), FOREIGN KEY (TagId) REFERENCES TagTypes (TagId) ); CREATE INDEX Tags_PostId_index ON Tags(PostId); CREATE INDEX Tags_TagId_index ON Tags(TagId);
  • Inverted index: Indexing INSERT INTO Tags (PostId, TagId) SELECT p.PostId, t.TagId FROM Posts p JOIN TagTypes t ON (p.Tags LIKE ‘%<’ || t.Tag || ‘>%’); 90 seconds per tag!!
  • Inverted index: Querying SELECT p.* FROM Posts p JOIN Tags t USING (PostId) JOIN TagTypes tt USING (TagId) WHERE tt.Tag = ‘performance’; 40 milliseconds
  • Search Engine Services
  • Search engine services: Google Custom Search Engine • http://www.google.com/cse/ • DEMO ➪ http://www.karwin.com/demo/gcse-demo.html even big web sites use this solution
  • Search engine services: Is it right for you? • Your site is public and allows external index • Search is a non-critical feature for you • Search results are satisfactory • You need to offload search processing
  • Comparison: Time to Build Index LIKE predicate none PostgreSQL / GIN 40 min Sphinx Search 6 min Apache Lucene 9 min Inverted index high Google / Yahoo! offline
  • Comparison: Index Storage LIKE predicate none PostgreSQL / GIN 532 MB Sphinx Search 533 MB Apache Lucene 1071 MB Inverted index 101 MB Google / Yahoo! offline
  • Comparison: Query Speed LIKE predicate 90+ sec PostgreSQL / GIN 20 ms Sphinx Search 8 ms Apache Lucene 80 ms Inverted index 40 ms Google / Yahoo! *
  • Comparison: Bottom-Line indexing storage query solution LIKE predicate none none 11,250x SQL PostgreSQL / GIN 7x 5.3x 2.5x RDBMS Sphinx Search 1x * 5.3x 1x 3rd party Apache Lucene 1.5x 10x 10x 3rd party Inverted index high 1x 5x SQL Google / Yahoo! offline offline * Service
  • Copyright 2009 Bill Karwin www.slideshare.net/billkarwin Released under a Creative Commons 3.0 License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/ You are free to share - to copy, distribute and transmit this work, under the following conditions: Attribution. Noncommercial. No Derivative Works. You must attribute this You may not use this work You may not alter, work to Bill Karwin. for commercial purposes. transform, or build upon this work.