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Jinghui Xue, Jiongzhi Zheng, Mingming Jin, Kun He

The Maximum s-Bundle Problem (MBP) addresses the task of identifying a maximum s-bundle in a given graph. A graph G=(V, E) is called an s-bundle if its vertex connectivity is at least |V|-s, where the vertex connectivity equals the minimum number of vertices whose deletion yields a disconnected or trivial graph. MBP is NP-hard and holds relevance in numerous realworld scenarios emphasizing the vertex connectivity. Exact algorithms for MBP mainly follow the branch-and-bound (BnB) framework, whose performance heavily depends on the quality of the upper bound on the cardinality of a maximum s-bundle and the initial lower bound with graph reduction. In this work, we introduce a novel Partition-based Upper Bound (PUB) that leverages the graph partitioning technique to achieve a tighter upper bound compared to existing ones. To increase the lower bound, we propose to do short random walks on a clique to generate larger initial solutions. Then, we propose a new BnB algorithm that uses the initial lower bound and PUB in preprocessing for graph reduction, and uses PUB in the BnB search process for branch pruning. Extensive experiments with diverse s values demonstrate the significant progress of our algorithm over state-of-the-art BnB MBP algorithms. Moreover, our initial lower bound can also be generalized to other relaxation clique problems.

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