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MassMine website  

MassMine is a social media mining and archiving application that simplifies the process of collecting and managing large amounts of data across multiple sources. It is designed with the researcher in mind, providing a flexible framework for tackling individualized research needs. MassMine is designed to run both on personal computers and dedicated servers/clusters. MassMine handles credential authorizations, data acquisition & archiving, as well as customized data export and analysis.

Additional Information

Installing and Running MassMine at UF Research Computing

You will need:

  • UF Research Computing Account: apply here.
  • A Twitter account
  • An SSH client:
    • Mac: Terminal is installed at /Applications/Utilities/Terminal
    • Windows: Most users use PuTTY
  • An SFTP client:

Connecting to Research Computing

The best host for running MassMine is There is some additional information about this host here. If you have a Mac or Linux machine, in the Terminal application, type:


Use your username, and enter your password when prompted. Note that when you type your password, nothing will appear.

If you have a Windows machine, open PuTTY and enter in the Hostname box of the window and click Open. Enter your password when prompted, again nothing will appear when you type your password.

Downloading MassMine

MassMine is hosted on GitHub and is under active development. At this time we are suggesting that each user download their own copy of MassMine and update it periodically. We recommend installing MassMine in your /scratch/lfs directory. The following is an example of the steps needed to download MassMine. Note the examples below were run for the user magitz, use your username where you see that.

[magitz@daemon1 ~]$ cd /scratch/lfs/magitz/
[magitz@daemon1 magitz]$ git clone
Initialized empty Git repository in /scratch/lfs/magitz/massmine/.git/
remote: Counting objects: 199, done.
remote: Total 199 (delta 0), reused 0 (delta 0)
Receiving objects: 100% (199/199), 147.03 KiB, done.
Resolving deltas: 100% (106/106), done.
[magitz@daemon1 ~]$

First Run Initialization

The first time MassMine is run, it checks for some needed R packages and installs them if not found. Here are the steps, picking up from the download above.

[magitz@daemon1 magitz]$ cd massmine/
[magitz@daemon1 massmine]$ module load R
[magitz@daemon1 massmine]$ ./massmine 

Note the "module load R" command. This gets the system ready to run R, the language in which MassMine was written. The module system is not a standard Linux feature, but greatly facilitates running applications at Research Computing. Learn more about modules here. When prompted, type "yes" to install the needed R packages.

Creating your Twitter app

To create a Twitter app for MassMine to use follow these steps

  1. Go to
  2. Make sure you are logged in
  3. Click the Create New App button
  4. Fill in the form, read and accept the developer agreement, and click Create your Twitter Application

Configure MassMine

MassMine is configured with a configuration file. There is an example file to use as a start at massmine/examples/mmconfig. Make a copy of the example into the main directory and edit this file using the nano text editor.

[magitz@daemon1 massmine]$ cp examples/mmconfig .
[magitz@daemon1 massmine]$ nano mmconfig 

Using your arrow keys move around and change the following lines for your Twitter app:

 - TwitterAppName
 - YourKeyGoesHere
 - YourSecretGoesHere

The mm_keys is the Consumer KEY (API Key) and mm_secrets is the Consumer Secret (API Secret) which you can get from the Keys and Access Tokens tab on the Twitter app page. Be sure to keep the "-" and one space between it and the App name, key and secret.

The additional configuration steps are outlined on the MassMine configuration page.

Authorizing MassMine to use your App

The last step to allow MassMine to use your App is to authorize it. Here's the steps (this assumes the R module is already loaded, Note the > on the second line is the R command prompt, don't type this):

[magitz@daemon1 massmine]$ R
> source("massmine")
Please choose an account to authenticate:
 <Option> RC_test
Choose => RC_test
To enable the connection, please direct your web browser to:
When complete, record the PIN given to you and provide it here: 1234567
MassMine is loaded and ready to go
> q()

Copy and paste the URL into a web browser and click Authorize app. Type the number in at the prompt and hit return. Quit R by typing q() and typing n to not save your workspace.

Running MassMine

You are now ready to run MassMine! Simply type:

[magitz@daemon1 massmine]$ ./massmine mmconfig

Running MassMine for Long Periods

If you configure MassMine to use the streaming API and set a run time longer than you want to keep your ssh connection open, you can run MassMine in the background. Either start MassMine as above and then type control-Z, then "bg" or modify the command above by adding the & character:

[magitz@daemon1 massmine]$ ./massmine mmconfig &

You can log out of the daemon1 node and MassMine will continue to run.

Retrieving Your Data

MassMine saves your data in the file specified in the mmconfig file. You can download this file using an SFTP client like FileZilla. Please see the FileZilla page for more information on using this tool. You can also mount your scratch space on a computer on the UF network using samba as outlined here. Or use GatorBox as outlined here.


If you publish research that uses MassMine you have to cite it as follows:

Van Horn, N. M. & Beveridge, A. (2014). MassMine: Your Access To Big Data.