map vs mapValues in Spark

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I'm newbie to Spark and working on developing custom machine learning algorithms. My question is what is the difference between .map() and .mapValues() in RDD and what are cases where which one I have to use?

Thanks in advance!
Jun 29, 2018 in Apache Spark by Shubham
• 13,350 points

1 answer to this question.

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There is a difference between the two:

mapValues is only applicable for PairRDDs, meaning RDDs of the form RDD[(A, B)]. In that case, mapValues operates on the value only (the second part of the tuple), while map operates on the entire record (tuple of key and value).

In other words, given f: B => C and rdd: RDD[(A, B)], these two are identical

val result: RDD[(A, C)] = { case (k, v) => (k, f(v)) }

val result: RDD[(A, C)] = rdd.mapValues(f)
The latter is simply shorter and clearer, so when you just want to transform the values and keep the keys as-is, it's recommended to use mapValues.

On the other hand, if you want to transform the keys too (e.g. you want to apply f: (A, B) => C), you simply can't use mapValues because it would only pass the values to your function.

The last difference concerns partitioning: if you applied any custom partitioning to your RDD (e.g. using partitionBy), using map would "forget" that paritioner (the result will revert to default partitioning) as the keys might have changed; mapValues, however, preserves any partitioner set on the RDD.

Hope this will answer your query to some extent.

answered Jun 29, 2018 by nitinrawat895
• 10,800 points
Can you provide working examples?

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