R is my hackers language of choice for analysis work. It really appeals to my sense of iteratively refining a solution. To my delight, I stumbled across this set of libraries for calling out to Hadoop Mapreduce, HDFS, and HBASE directly from R - RHadoop .
It was surprisingly easy to get going - especially with some patient help from Antonio - the project owner. RHadoop relies on the same fixes that Dumbo requires, but the game changer here is that from Hadoop 1.0.2, all the key patches that both require are now part of core.
The thing that tripped me up was a custom .Rprofile file I was using to load, and print things at the startup for R. This was causing R to write things to stdout which is what Hadoop streaming is using to pass data between tasks. This corrupted the data transfer, which was killing RHadoop with a weird Java Heap error. Anyway, once sorted out, everything runs smoothly, and I like the intuitive way things are handled in an R'esque manner. eg. take the example from the tutorial :

> library(rmr)
Loading required package: RJSONIO
Loading required package: itertools
Loading required package: iterators
Loading required package: digest
> small.ints = to.dfs(1:10)
Warning: $HADOOP_HOME is deprecated.

12/04/28 19:17:45 INFO util.NativeCodeLoader: Loaded the native-hadoop library
12/04/28 19:17:45 INFO zlib.ZlibFactory: Successfully loaded & initialized native-zlib library
12/04/28 19:17:45 INFO compress.CodecPool: Got brand-new compressor
> out = mapreduce(input = small.ints, map = function(k,v) keyval(v, v^2))
Warning: $HADOOP_HOME is deprecated.

packageJobJar: [/tmp/RtmpXlELmY/rmr-local-env, /tmp/RtmpXlELmY/rmr-global-env, 
                              /home/piers/hadoop/tmp/hadoop-unjar1509588906818235502/] []
                              /tmp/streamjob912555254031649512.jar tmpDir=null
12/04/28 19:18:04 INFO mapred.FileInputFormat: Total input paths to process : 1
12/04/28 19:18:05 INFO streaming.StreamJob: getLocalDirs(): [/home/piers/hadoop/tmp/mapred/local]
12/04/28 19:18:05 INFO streaming.StreamJob: Running job: job_201204281916_0001
12/04/28 19:18:05 INFO streaming.StreamJob: To kill this job, run:
12/04/28 19:18:05 INFO streaming.StreamJob: /usr/libexec/../bin/hadoop job 
                             -Dmapred.job.tracker= -kill job_201204281916_0001
12/04/28 19:18:15 INFO streaming.StreamJob: Tracking URL:
12/04/28 19:18:16 INFO streaming.StreamJob:  map 0%  reduce 0%
12/04/28 19:18:45 INFO streaming.StreamJob:  map 100%  reduce 0%
12/04/28 19:18:54 INFO streaming.StreamJob:  map 100%  reduce 17%
12/04/28 19:18:57 INFO streaming.StreamJob:  map 100%  reduce 67%
12/04/28 19:19:06 INFO streaming.StreamJob:  map 100%  reduce 100%
12/04/28 19:19:21 INFO streaming.StreamJob: Job complete: job_201204281916_0001
12/04/28 19:19:21 INFO streaming.StreamJob: Output: /tmp/RtmpXlELmY/file2cf7546b881b
> from.dfs('/tmp/RtmpXlELmY/file2cf7546b881b')
Warning: $HADOOP_HOME is deprecated.

Warning: $HADOOP_HOME is deprecated.

Warning: $HADOOP_HOME is deprecated.

[1] 1

[1] 1

[1] TRUE

[1] 2

[1] 4

Posted by PiersHarding at April 28, 2012 8:04 PM