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Comparing Experiments

It is always useful to investigate what causes an experiment to succeed. The ClearML Web UI provides a deep experiment comparison, allowing to locate, visualize, and analyze differences including:

The ClearML experiment comparison provides comparison features making it easy to compare experiments.

Selecting Experiments to Compare#

To select experiments to compare:

  1. Go to an experiments table, which includes the experiments to be compared.
  2. Select the experiments to compare, select the checkboxes individually or select the top checkbox for all experiments. After selecting the second checkbox, a bottom bar appears.
  3. In the bottom bar, click COMPARE. The comparison page appears, showing a column for each experiment and differences with a highlighted background color. The experiment on the left is the base experiment. Other experiments compare to the base experiment.

Details#

The DETAILS tab includes deep comparisons of the following:

  • Artifacts - Input/output models and their configuration, and other artifacts, if any.
  • Execution Details - Source code, uncommitted changes, and installed python packages. See details here.
  • Configuration - Configuration objects used by the experiment, sorted by sections. See details here.
  • Info - General experiment details. This includes information describing the stored experiment. See details here.

To Locate the Source Differences:

Click the DETAILS tab > Expand highlighted sections, or, in the header, click Up arrow (Previous diff) or Down arrow (Next diff).

For example, in the image below, expanding ARTIFACTS > Output Model > Model shows that the model names are different.

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Hyperparameters#

Compare hyperparameters as values, or compare by metric (hyperparameter parallel coordinate comparison).

Values Mode#

The Values mode is a side-by-side comparison that shows hyperparameter value differences highlighted line-by-line.

To view a side by side values comparison:

  1. Click the HYPER PARAMETERS tab.
  2. In the dropdown menu (on the upper left, next to + Add Experiments), choose Values.
  3. To show only differences, move the Hide Identical Fields slider to on.
  4. Locate differences by either:
    • Clicking Up arrow (Previous diff) orDown arrow (Next diff).
    • Scrolling to see highlighted hyperparameters.

For example, expanding General shows that the batch_size and epochs differ between the experiments.

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Parallel Coordinates Mode#

In the Parallel Coordinates mode, compare a metric to any combination of hyperparameters using a parallel coordinates plot.

To compare by metric:

  1. Click the HYPER PARAMETERS tab.
  2. In the dropdown menu (on the upper left, next to + Add Experiments), choose Parallel Coordinates.
  3. In Performance Metric, expand a metric or monitored resource, and then click a variant.
  4. Select the metric values to use. Choose one of the following:
    • LAST - The final value, or the most recent value, for in-progress experiments.
    • MIN - Minimal value.
    • MAX - Maximal value.
  5. In Parameters, select the hyperparameter checkboxes to compare.
  6. To view one experiment on the plot, hover over the experiment name in the legend.

For example, plot the metric/variant epoch_accuracy/validation: epoch_accuracy against the hyperparameters batch_size and epochs.

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Hover over one of the experiment names in the legend, and the plot shows only that data.

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Scalars#

Visualize the comparison of scalars, which includes metrics and monitored resources in the SCALARS tab.

Compare Specific Values#

To compare specific values:

  1. Click the SCALARS tab.
  2. In the dropdown menu (upper right of the left sidebar), choose either:
    • Last Values (the final or most recent value)
    • Min Values (the minimal values)
    • Max Values (the maximal values)
  3. Sort by variant.

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Compare Scalar Series#

Compare scalar series in plots and analyze differences using ClearML Web UI plot tools.

To compare scalar series:

  1. Click the SCALARS tab.
  2. In the dropdown menu (upper right of the left sidebar), choose Graph.

To improve scalar series analysis:

  • In Group by, select one of these option:
    • Metric - all variants for a metric on the same plot.
    • Metric+Variant - every variant appears on its own plot.
  • Horizontal axis options:
    • Iterations,
    • Relative time since the experiment began,
    • Wall (clock time).
  • Smooth a curve - move the Smoothing slider or type in a smoothing number from 0 to 0.999.
  • Use plot controls, which appear when you hover over the top of a plot.
  • Hide / show scalar plots - Click Hide all and Eye Show All.
  • Filter scalars by full or partial scalar name.

This image shows scalars grouped by metric.

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This image shows scalars grouped by metric and variant.

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Plots#

Visualize the comparison of any data that ClearML automatically captures or that is explicitly reported in experiments, in the PLOTS tab.

To compare plots:

  1. Click the PLOTS tab.

  2. To improve your comparison, use either of the following:

    • To locate scalars, click HIDE ALL, and then Eye Show All (show) to choose which scalars to see. Scalars can also be filtered by full or partial scalar name, using the search bar.
    • Use any of the plot controls that appear when hovering over the top of a plot, including:
      • Downloading the image
      • Downloading the data as JSON
      • Zooming
      • Panning
      • Switching between logarithmic / linear scale.

Debug Samples#

Compare debug samples at any iteration to verify that an experiment is running as expected. The most recent iteration appears first. Use the viewer / player to inspect images, audio, video samples and do any of the following:

  • Move to the same sample in a different iteration (move the iteration slider).
  • Show the next or previous iteration's sample.
  • Download the file Download.
  • Zoom.
  • View the sample's iteration number, width, height, and coordinates.

To compare debug samples:

  1. Click the DEBUG SAMPLES tab. The most recent iteration appears at the top.

  2. Locate debug samples by doing the following:

    • Filter by metric. In the Metric list, choose a metric.
    • Show other iterations. Click Left arrow (Older images),Right arrow (New images), or right arrow, newest image (Newest images).

    image

  3. To open a debug sample (image, audio, or video) in the viewer or player, click the thumbnail.

    image

  4. To move to the same sample in another iteration, click Left arrow (previous), Right arrow (next), or move the slider.

To view a debug sample in the viewer / player:

  1. Click the debug sample thumbnail.

  2. Do any of the following:

    • Move to the same sample in another iteration - Move the slider, or click < (previous) or > (next).
    • Download the file - Click Download.
    • Zoom
    • For images, locate a position on the sample - Hover over the sample and the X, Y coordinates appear in the legend below the sample.

Comparison Features#

To assist in experiment analysis, the comparison page supports:

Changing Compared Experiments Selection#

  1. Click + Add Experiment in the top left corner of any of the comparison pages. This will open up a window with an experiment table with the currently compared experiments at the top.
  2. Find the experiments to add by sorting and filtering the experiments with the appropriate column header controls. Alternatively, use the search bar to find experiments by name.
  3. Select experiments to include in the comparison (and / or clear the selection of any experiment you wish to remove).
  4. Click APPLY.

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Finding the Next or Previous Difference#

  • Find the previous difference Up arrow, or the next difference Down arrow.

Hiding Identical Fields#

Move the Hide Identical Fields slider to "on" mode to see only fields that are different.

Searching All Text#

Search all text in the comparison.

Choosing a Different Base Experiment#

Show differences in other experiments in reference to a new base experiment. To set a new base experiment, do one of the following:

  • Click on Switch base experiment on the top right of the experiment that will be the new base.
  • Click on Pan the new base experiment and drag it all the way to the left

Dynamic Ordering of the Compared Experiments#

To reorder the experiments being compared, press Pan on the top right of the experiment that needs to be moved, and drag the experiment to its new position.

Removing an Experiment from the Comparison#

Remove an experiment from the comparison, by pressing Minus on the top right of the experiment that needs to be removed.

Sharing Experiments#

To share a comparison table, copy the full URL from the address bar and send it to a teammate to collaborate. They will get the exact same page (including selected tabs etc.).