This calls the clone() method of a MapReduce object, which converts a KeyValue object directly into a KeyMultiValue object. It simply turns each key in KeyValue object into a key in the new KeyMultiValue object, with the same value. The method returns the total number of key/value pairs in the KeyMultiValue object, which will be the same as the number in the KeyValue object.
This method essentially enables a KeyValue object to be passed directly to a reduce operation, which requires a KeyMultiValue object as input. Typically you would only do this if the keys in the KeyValue object are already unique, to avoid the extra overhead of an aggregate() or convert() or collate(), but this is not required. If they are not, then there will also be duplicate keys in the KeyMultiValue object.
Note that one of the map() methods allows an existing KeyValue object to be passed as input to a user mymap() function, generating a new Keyvalue object in the process. Thus there is typically no need to invoke clone() followed by reduce().
This method is an on-processor operation, requiring no communication. When run in parallel, the key/value pairs of the new KeyMultiValue object are stored on the same processor which owns the corresponding KeyValue pairs.
Related methods: collapse(), collate, convert()