As very heavy Spark users at Parse.ly, I just wanted to give a +1 to all of the issues raised by Holden and Ricardo. I'm also giving a talk at PyCon Canada on PySpark https://2016.pycon.ca/en/schedule/096-mike-sukmanowsky/.
Being a Python shop, we were extremely pleased to learn about PySpark a few years ago as our main ETL pipeline used Apache Pig at the time. I was one of the only folks who understood Pig and Java so collaborating on this as a team was difficult. Spark provided a means for the entire team to collaborate, but we've hit our fair share of issues all of which are enumerated in this thread. Besides giving a +1 here, I think if I were to force rank these items for us, it'd be: 1. Configuration difficulties: we've lost literally weeks to troubleshooting memory issues for larger jobs. It took a long time to even understand *why* certain jobs were failing since Spark would just report executors being lost. Finally we tracked things down to understanding that spark.yarn.executor.memoryOverhead controls the portion of memory reserved for Python processes, but none of this is documented anywhere as far as I can tell. We discovered this via trial and error. Both documentation and better defaults for this setting when running a PySpark application are probably sufficient. We've also had a number of troubles with saving Parquet output as part of an ETL flow, but perhaps we'll save that for a blog post of its own. 2. Dependency management: I've tried to help move the conversation on https://issues.apache.org/jira/browse/SPARK-13587 but it seems we're a bit stalled. Installing the required dependencies for a PySpark application is a really messy ordeal right now. 3. Development workflow: I'd combine both "incomprehensible error messages" and " difficulty using PySpark from outside of spark-submit / pyspark shell" here. When teaching PySpark to new users, I'm reminded of how much inside knowledge is needed to overcome esoteric errors. As one example is hitting "PicklingError: Could not pickle object as excessively deep recursion required." errors. New users often do something innocent like try to pickle a global logging object and hit this and begin the Google -> stackoverflow search to try to comprehend what's going on. You can lose days to errors like these and they completely kill the productivity flow and send you hunting for alternatives. 4. Speed/performance: we are trying to use DataFrame/DataSets where we can and do as much in Java as possible but when we do move to Python, we're well aware that we're about to take a hit on performance. We're very keen to see what Apache Arrow does for things here. 5. API difficulties: I agree that when coming from Python, you'd expect that you can do the same kinds of operations on DataFrames in Spark that you can with Pandas, but I personally haven't been too bothered by this. Maybe I'm more used to this situation from using other frameworks that have similar concepts but incompatible implementations. We're big fans of PySpark and are happy to provide feedback and contribute wherever we can. -- View this message in context: http://apache-spark-developers-list.1001551.n3.nabble.com/Python-Spark-Improvements-forked-from-Spark-Improvement-Proposals-tp19422p19426.html Sent from the Apache Spark Developers List mailing list archive at Nabble.com. --------------------------------------------------------------------- To unsubscribe e-mail: dev-unsubscr...@spark.apache.org