Provide Dataset Metadata to Training Jobs with an Augmented Manifest File - Amazon SageMaker

Provide Dataset Metadata to Training Jobs with an Augmented Manifest File

To include metadata with your dataset in a training job, use an augmented manifest file. When using an augmented manifest file, your dataset must be stored in Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), and you must configure your training job to use the dataset stored there. You specify the location and format of this dataset for one or more Channel. Augmented manifests can only support Pipe input mode. See the section, InputMode in Channel to learn more about pipe input mode.

When specifying a channel's parameters, you specify a path to the file, called a S3Uri. Amazon SageMaker interprets this URI based on the specified S3DataType in S3DataSource. The AugmentedManifestFile option defines a manifest format that includes metadata with the input data. Using an augmented manifest file is an alternative to preprocessing when you have labeled data. For training jobs using labeled data, you typically need to preprocess the dataset to combine input data with metadata before training. If your training dataset is large, preprocessing can be time consuming and expensive.

Augmented Manifest File Format

An augmented manifest file must be formatted in JSON Lines format. In JSON Lines format, each line in the file is a complete JSON object followed by a newline separator.

During training, SageMaker parses each JSON line and sends some or all of its attributes on to the training algorithm. You specify which attribute contents to pass and the order in which to pass them with the AttributeNames parameter of the CreateTrainingJob API. The AttributeNames parameter is an ordered list of attribute names that SageMaker looks for in the JSON object to use as training input.

For example, if you list ["line", "book"] for AttributeNames, the input data must include the attribute names of line and book in the specified order. For this example, the following augmented manifest file content is valid:

{"author": "Herman Melville", "line": "Call me Ishmael", "book": "Moby Dick"} {"line": "It was love at first sight.", "author": "Joseph Heller", "book": "Catch-22"}

SageMaker ignores unlisted attribute names even if they precede, follow, or are in between listed attributes.

When using augmented manifest files, observe the following guidelines:

  • The order of the attributes listed in the AttributeNames parameter determines the order of the attributes passed to the algorithm in the training job.

  • The listed AttributeNames can be a subset of all of the attributes in the JSON line. SageMaker ignores unlisted attributes in the file.

  • You can specify any type of data allowed by the JSON format in AttributeNames, including text, numerical, data arrays, or objects.

  • To include an S3 URI as an attribute name, add the suffix -ref to it.

If an attribute name contains the suffix -ref, the attribute's value must be an S3 URI to a data file that is accessible to the training job. For example, if AttributeNames contains ["image-ref", "is-a-cat"], the following example shows a valid augmented manifest file:

{"image-ref": "s3://mybucket/sample01/image1.jpg", "is-a-cat": 1} {"image-ref": "s3://mybucket/sample02/image2.jpg", "is-a-cat": 0}

In case of the first JSON line of this manifest file, SageMaker retrieves the image1.jpg file from s3://mybucket/sample01/ and the string representation of the is-a-cat attribute "1" for image classification.


To create an augmented manifest file, use Amazon SageMaker Ground Truth and create a labeling job. For more information about the output from a labeling job, see Output Data.

Stream Augmented Manifest File Data

Augmented manifest format enables you to do training in Pipe mode using files without needing to create RecordIO files. You need to specify both train and validation channels as values for the InputDataConfig parameter of the CreateTrainingJob request. Augmented manifest files are supported only for channels using Pipe input mode. For each channel, the data is extracted from its augmented manifest file and streamed (in order) to the algorithm through the channel's named pipe. Pipe mode uses the first in first out (FIFO) method, so records are processed in the order in which they are queued. For information about Pipe input mode, see Input Mode.

Attribute names with a "-ref" suffix point to preformatted binary data. In some cases, the algorithm knows how to parse the data. In other cases, you might need to wrap the data so that records are delimited for the algorithm. If the algorithm is compatible with RecordIO-formatted data, specifying RecordIO for RecordWrapperType solves this issue. If the algorithm is not compatible with RecordIO format, specify None for RecordWrapperType and make sure that your data is parsed correctly for your algorithm.

Using the ["image-ref", "is-a-cat"] example, if you use RecordIO wrapping, the following stream of data is sent to the queue:


Images that are not wrapped with RecordIO format, are streamed with the corresponding is-a-cat attribute value as one record. This can cause a problem because the algorithm might not delimit the images and attributes correctly. For more information about using augmented manifest files for image classification, see Train with Augmented Manifest Image Format.

With augmented manifest files and Pipe mode in general, size limits of the EBS volume do not apply. This includes settings that otherwise must be within the EBS volume size limit such as S3DataDistributionType . For more information about Pipe mode and how to use it, see Using Your Own Training Algorithms - Input Data Configuration.

Use an Augmented Manifest File (Console)

To complete this procedure, you need:

  • The URL of the S3 bucket where you've stored the augmented manifest file.

  • To store the data that is listed in the augmented manifest file in an S3 bucket.

  • The URL of the S3 bucket where you want to store the output of the job.

To use an augmented manifest file in a training job (console)

  1. Open the Amazon SageMaker console at

  2. In the navigation pane, choose Training, then choose Training jobs.

  3. Choose Create training job.

  4. Provide a name for the training job. The name must be unique within an AWS Region in an AWS account. It can have 1 to 63 characters. Valid characters: a-z, A-Z, 0-9, and . : + = @ _ % - (hyphen).

  5. Choose the algorithm that you want to use. For information about supported built-in algorithms, see Use Amazon SageMaker Built-in Algorithms or Pre-trained Models. If you want to use a custom algorithm, make sure that it is compatible with Pipe mode.

  6. (Optional) For Resource configuration, either accept the default values or, to reduce computation time, increase the resource consumption.

    1. (Optional) For Instance type, choose the ML compute instance type that you want to use. In most cases, ml.m4.xlarge is sufficient.

    2. For Instance count, use the default, 1.

    3. (Optional) For Additional volume per instance (GB), choose the size of the ML storage volume that you want to provision. In most cases, you can use the default, 1. If you are using a large dataset, use a larger size.

  7. Provide information about the input data for the training dataset.

    1. For Channel name, either accept the default (train) or enter a more meaningful name, such as training-augmented-manifest-file.

    2. For InputMode, choose Pipe.

    3. For S3 data distribution type, choose FullyReplicated. When training incrementally, fully replicating causes each ML compute instance to use a complete copy of the expanded dataset. For neural-based algorithms, such as Neural Topic Model (NTM) Algorithm, choose ShardedByS3Key.

    4. If the data specified in the augmented manifest file is uncompressed, set the Compression type to None. If the data is compressed using gzip, set it to Gzip.

    5. (Optional) For Content type, specify the appropriate MIME type. Content type is the multipurpose internet mail extension (MIME) type of the data.

    6. For Record wrapper, if the dataset specified in the augmented manifest file is saved in RecordIO format, choose RecordIO. If your dataset is not saved as a RecordIO-formatted file, choose None.

    7. For S3 data type, choose AugmentedManifestFile.

    8. For S3 location, provide the path to the bucket where you stored the augmented manifest file.

    9. For AugmentedManifestFile attribute names, specify the name of an attribute that you want to use. The attribute name must be present within the augmented manifest file, and is case-sensitive.

    10. (Optional) To add more attribute names, choose Add row and specify another attribute name for each attribute.

    11. (Optional) To adjust the order of attribute names, choose the up or down buttons next to the names. When using an augmented manifest file, the order of the specified attribute names is important.

    12. Choose Done.

  8. For Output data configuration, provide the following information:

    1. For S3 location, type the path to the S3 bucket where you want to store the output data.

    2. (Optional) You can use your AWS Key Management Service (AWS KMS) encryption key to encrypt the output data at rest. For Encryption key, provide the key ID or its Amazon Resource Number (ARN). For more information, see KMS-Managed Encryption Keys.

  9. (Optional) For Tags, add one or more tags to the training job. A tag is metadata that you can define and assign to AWS resources. In this case, you can use tags to help you manage your training jobs. A tag consists of a key and a value, which you define. For example, you might want to create a tag with Project as a key and a value that refers to a project that is related to the training job, such as Home value forecasts.

  10. Choose Create training job. SageMaker creates and runs the training job.

After the training job has finished, SageMaker stores the model artifacts in the bucket whose path you provided for S3 output path in the Output data configuration field. To deploy the model to get predictions, see Step 5: Deploy the Model to Amazon EC2.

Use an Augmented Manifest File (API)

The following shows how to train a model with an augmented manifest file using the SageMaker high-level Python library:

import sagemaker # Create a model object set to using "Pipe" mode. model = sagemaker.estimator.Estimator( training_image, role, instance_count=1, instance_type='ml.p3.2xlarge', volume_size = 50, max_run = 360000, input_mode = 'Pipe', output_path=s3_output_location, sagemaker_session=session ) # Create a train data channel with S3_data_type as 'AugmentedManifestFile' and attribute names. train_data = sagemaker.inputs.TrainingInput( your_augmented_manifest_file, distribution='FullyReplicated', content_type='application/x-recordio', s3_data_type='AugmentedManifestFile', attribute_names=['source-ref', 'annotations'], input_mode='Pipe', record_wrapping='RecordIO' ) data_channels = {'train': train_data} # Train a model., logs=True)

After the training job has finished, SageMaker stores the model artifacts in the bucket whose path you provided for S3 output path in the Output data configuration field. To deploy the model to get predictions, see Step 5: Deploy the Model to Amazon EC2.