This is a simple commandline utility to take an input database file and divide it into similar-sized smaller pieces. Then each piece can be used as a dbase file in a separate ROCS run. This divide-and-conquer approach is an alternative way to run a single dbase over multiple CPUs but without the use of MPI.

Example Commands

To break input.oeb.gz into 5 chunks, each with the same number of molecules.

prompt> chunker -in input.oeb.gz -base bar -nchunks 5

would create


To break input.oeb.gz into chunks, each with 1000 multi-conformer molecules:

prompt> chunker -in input.oeb.gz -base foo -chunksize 1000

Command Line Help

A description of the command line interface can be obtained by executing Chunker with the –help option.

> chunker --help

will generate the following output:

Help functions:
  chunker --help simple      : Get a list of simple parameters
  chunker --help all         : Get a complete list of parameters
  chunker --help defaults    : List the defaults for all parameters
  chunker --help <parameter> : Get detailed help on a parameter
  chunker --help html        : Create an html help file for this program
  chunker --help versions    : List the toolkits and versions used in the application

Required Parameters

-in <filename>

Name of input file to chunk.

-base <NAME>

Base name of output files. Output files will be sequentially numbered.

And one of the following two options must be used:

-nchunks N

Create N new files of equal number of conformers or molecules. Chunker will read through the entire file once to count the number of conformers/molecules, then will create the new files. The switch is the -countConfs flag. N must be a positive integer.

-chunksize M

Create new files, each containing M molecules. M must be a positive integer.


Only one of -nchunks or -chunksize can be used.

Optional Parameters


If the flag -countConfs is set to true then the file will be switched to give approximately equal numbers of conformers in each chunk. The split always occurs at the end of each molecule so all the conformers for each molecule are kept together. If the flag -countConfs is set to false then the file will be switched to give equal numbers of molecules in each chunk.

[default = true]


This option will pad the front of the output filenames with zeroes, which helps keep files in order when doing a sort of filenames.

[default = true]