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A Two-Step Approach for Tree-structured XPath Query Reduction

Authors: Minsoo Lee, Yun-mi Kim, Yoon-kyung Lee


XML data consists of a very flexible tree-structure which makes it difficult to support the storing and retrieving of XML data. The node numbering scheme is one of the most popular approaches to store XML in relational databases. Together with the node numbering storage scheme, structural joins can be used to efficiently process the hierarchical relationships in XML. However, in order to process a tree-structured XPath query containing several hierarchical relationships and conditional sentences on XML data, many structural joins need to be carried out, which results in a high query execution cost. This paper introduces mechanisms to reduce the XPath queries including branch nodes into a much more efficient form with less numbers of structural joins. A two step approach is proposed. The first step merges duplicate nodes in the tree-structured query and the second step divides the query into sub-queries, shortens the paths and then merges the sub-queries back together. The proposed approach can highly contribute to the efficient execution of XML queries. Experimental results show that the proposed scheme can reduce the query execution cost by up to an order of magnitude of the original execution cost.

Keywords: XML, Xpath, tree-structured query, query reduction.

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