Array.Sort<TKey, TValue> Method (TKey[], TValue[])

Sorts a pair of Array objects (one contains the keys and the other contains the corresponding items) based on the keys in the first Array using the IComparable<T> generic interface implementation of each key.

Namespace:  System
Assembly:  mscorlib (in mscorlib.dll)

public static void Sort<TKey, TValue>(
	TKey[] keys,
	TValue[] items
)

Type Parameters

TKey

The type of the elements of the key array.

TValue

The type of the elements of the items array.

Parameters

keys
Type: TKey[]
The one-dimensional, zero-based Array that contains the keys to sort.
items
Type: TValue[]
The one-dimensional, zero-based Array that contains the items that correspond to the keys in keys, or null to sort only keys.

ExceptionCondition
ArgumentNullException

keys is null.

ArgumentException

items is not null, and the lower bound of keys does not match the lower bound of items.

-or-

items is not null, and the length of keys is greater than the length of items.

InvalidOperationException

One or more elements in the keys Array do not implement the IComparable<T> generic interface.

Each key in the keys Array has a corresponding item in the items Array. When a key is repositioned during the sorting, the corresponding item in the items Array is similarly repositioned. Therefore, the items Array is sorted according to the arrangement of the corresponding keys in the keys Array.

Each key in the keys Array must implement the IComparable<T> generic interface to be capable of comparisons with every other key.

You can sort if there are more items than keys, but the items that have no corresponding keys will not be sorted. You cannot sort if there are more keys than items; doing this throws an ArgumentException.

If the sort is not successfully completed, the results are undefined.

This method uses the QuickSort algorithm. This implementation performs an unstable sort; that is, if two elements are equal, their order might not be preserved. In contrast, a stable sort preserves the order of elements that are equal.

On average, this method is an O(n log n) operation, where n is the Length of array; in the worst case it is an O(n ^ 2) operation.

The following code example demonstrates the Sort<TKey, TValue>(TKey[], TValue[]), Sort<TKey, TValue>(TKey[], TValue[], IComparer<TKey>), Sort<TKey, TValue>(TKey[], TValue[], Int32, Int32), and Sort<TKey, TValue>(TKey[], TValue[], Int32, Int32, IComparer<TKey>) generic method overloads, for sorting pairs of arrays that represent keys and values.

The code example defines an alternative comparer for strings, named ReverseCompare, which implements the IComparer<string> (IComparer(Of String) in Visual Basic, IComparer<String^> in Visual C++) generic interface. The comparer calls the CompareTo(String) method, reversing the order of the comparands so that the strings sort high-to-low instead of low-to-high.

The code example creates and displays an array of dinosaur names (the keys) and an array of integers representing the maximum length of each dinosaur in meters (the values). The arrays are then sorted and displayed several times:

NoteNote

The calls to the generic methods do not look any different from calls to their nongeneric counterparts, because Visual Basic, C#, and C++ infer the type of the generic type parameter from the type of the first two arguments. If you use the Ildasm.exe (MSIL Disassembler) to examine the Microsoft intermediate language (MSIL), you can see that the generic methods are being called.


using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;

public class ReverseComparer: IComparer<string>
{
    public int Compare(string x, string y)
    {
        // Compare y and x in reverse order.
        return y.CompareTo(x);
    }
}

public class Example
{
    public static void Main()
    {
        string[] dinosaurs = {
            "Seismosaurus", 
            "Chasmosaurus", 
            "Coelophysis", 
            "Mamenchisaurus", 
            "Caudipteryx", 
            "Cetiosaurus"  };

        int[] dinosaurSizes = { 40, 5, 3, 22, 1, 18 };

        Console.WriteLine();
        for (int i = 0; i < dinosaurs.Length; i++)
        {
            Console.WriteLine("{0}: up to {1} meters long.", 
                dinosaurs[i], dinosaurSizes[i]);
        }

        Console.WriteLine("\nSort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes)");
        Array.Sort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes);

        Console.WriteLine();
        for (int i = 0; i < dinosaurs.Length; i++)
        {
            Console.WriteLine("{0}: up to {1} meters long.", 
                dinosaurs[i], dinosaurSizes[i]);
        }

        ReverseComparer rc = new ReverseComparer();

        Console.WriteLine("\nSort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes, rc)");
        Array.Sort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes, rc);

        Console.WriteLine();
        for (int i = 0; i < dinosaurs.Length; i++)
        {
            Console.WriteLine("{0}: up to {1} meters long.", 
                dinosaurs[i], dinosaurSizes[i]);
        }

        Console.WriteLine("\nSort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes, 3, 3)");
        Array.Sort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes, 3, 3);

        Console.WriteLine();
        for (int i = 0; i < dinosaurs.Length; i++)
        {
            Console.WriteLine("{0}: up to {1} meters long.", 
                dinosaurs[i], dinosaurSizes[i]);
        }

        Console.WriteLine("\nSort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes, 3, 3, rc)");
        Array.Sort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes, 3, 3, rc);

        Console.WriteLine();
        for (int i = 0; i < dinosaurs.Length; i++)
        {
            Console.WriteLine("{0}: up to {1} meters long.", 
                dinosaurs[i], dinosaurSizes[i]);
        }
    }
}

/* This code example produces the following output:

Seismosaurus: up to 40 meters long.
Chasmosaurus: up to 5 meters long.
Coelophysis: up to 3 meters long.
Mamenchisaurus: up to 22 meters long.
Caudipteryx: up to 1 meters long.
Cetiosaurus: up to 18 meters long.

Sort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes)

Caudipteryx: up to 1 meters long.
Cetiosaurus: up to 18 meters long.
Chasmosaurus: up to 5 meters long.
Coelophysis: up to 3 meters long.
Mamenchisaurus: up to 22 meters long.
Seismosaurus: up to 40 meters long.

Sort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes, rc)

Seismosaurus: up to 40 meters long.
Mamenchisaurus: up to 22 meters long.
Coelophysis: up to 3 meters long.
Chasmosaurus: up to 5 meters long.
Cetiosaurus: up to 18 meters long.
Caudipteryx: up to 1 meters long.

Sort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes, 3, 3)

Seismosaurus: up to 40 meters long.
Mamenchisaurus: up to 22 meters long.
Coelophysis: up to 3 meters long.
Caudipteryx: up to 1 meters long.
Cetiosaurus: up to 18 meters long.
Chasmosaurus: up to 5 meters long.

Sort(dinosaurs, dinosaurSizes, 3, 3, rc)

Seismosaurus: up to 40 meters long.
Mamenchisaurus: up to 22 meters long.
Coelophysis: up to 3 meters long.
Chasmosaurus: up to 5 meters long.
Cetiosaurus: up to 18 meters long.
Caudipteryx: up to 1 meters long.
 */


.NET Framework

Supported in: 4, 3.5, 3.0, 2.0

.NET Framework Client Profile

Supported in: 4, 3.5 SP1

Windows 7, Windows Vista SP1 or later, Windows XP SP3, Windows XP SP2 x64 Edition, Windows Server 2008 (Server Core not supported), Windows Server 2008 R2 (Server Core supported with SP1 or later), Windows Server 2003 SP2

The .NET Framework does not support all versions of every platform. For a list of the supported versions, see .NET Framework System Requirements.
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