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Let G be a weighted graph in which each vertex initially has weight 1. A total acquisition move transfers all the weight from a vertex u to a neighboring vertex v, under the condition that before the move the weight on v is at least as large as the weight on u. The (total) acquisition number of G, written at(G), is the minimum size of the set of vertices with positive weight after a sequence of total acquisition moves. Among connected n-vertex graphs, at(G) is maximized by trees. The maximum is Θ(√(n lg n) for trees with diameter 4 or 5. It is⌊(n + 1)/3⌋ for trees with diameter between 6 and (2/3)(n + 1), and it is⌈(2n – 1 – D)/4⌉ for trees with diameter D when (2/3)(n + 1) ≤ Dn - 1. We characterize trees with acquisition number 1, which permits testing at(G) ≤ k in time O(nk+2) on trees. If G ≠ C5, then min{at(G), at()} = 1. If G has diameter 2, then at(G) ≤ 32 ln n ln ln n; we conjecture a constant upper bound. Indeed, at(G) = 1 when G has diameter 2 and no 4-cycle, except for four graphs with acquisition number 2. Deleting one edge of an n-vertex graph cannot increase at by more than 6.84√n, but we construct an n-vertex tree with an edge whose deletion increases it by more than (1/2)√n. We also obtain multiplicative upper bounds under products.

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