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What is RDD?

The RDD (Resilient Distributed Dataset) is the Spark's core abstraction. It is a collection of elements, partitioned across the nodes of the cluster so that we can execute various parallel operations on it.

There are two ways to create RDDs:

  • Parallelizing an existing data in the driver program
  • Referencing a dataset in an external storage system, such as a shared filesystem, HDFS, HBase, or any data source offering a Hadoop InputFormat.

Parallelized Collections

To create parallelized collection, call SparkContext's parallelize method on an existing collection in the driver program. Each element of collection is copied to form a distributed dataset that can be operated on in parallel.

Now, we can operate the distributed dataset (distinfo) parallel such like distinfo.reduce((a, b) => a + b).

External Datasets

In Spark, the distributed datasets can be created from any type of storage sources supported by Hadoop such as HDFS, Cassandra, HBase and even our local file system. Spark provides the support for text files, SequenceFiles, and other types of Hadoop InputFormat.

SparkContext's textFile method can be used to create RDD's text file. This method takes a URI for the file (either a local path on the machine or a hdfs://) and reads the data of the file.


Now, we can operate data on by dataset operations such as we can add up the sizes of all the lines using the map and reduceoperations as follows: => s.length).reduce((a, b) => a + b).

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