Sort Method (DataGridViewColumn, ListSortDirection)
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DataGridView.Sort Method (DataGridViewColumn, ListSortDirection)

Sorts the contents of the DataGridView control in ascending or descending order based on the contents of the specified column.

Namespace:  System.Windows.Forms
Assembly:  System.Windows.Forms (in System.Windows.Forms.dll)

public virtual void Sort(
	DataGridViewColumn dataGridViewColumn,
	ListSortDirection direction


Type: System.Windows.Forms.DataGridViewColumn

The column by which to sort the contents of the DataGridView.

Type: System.ComponentModel.ListSortDirection

One of the ListSortDirection values.


The specified column is not part of this DataGridView.


The DataSource property has been set and the IsDataBound property of the specified column returns false.


dataGridViewColumn is null.


The VirtualMode property is set to true and the IsDataBound property of the specified column returns false.


The object specified by the DataSource property does not implement the IBindingList interface.


The object specified by the DataSource property has a IBindingList.SupportsSorting property value of false.

This method sorts the contents of the DataGridView by comparing values in the specified column. By default, the sort operation will use the Compare method to compare pairs of cells in the column using the DataGridViewCell.Value property.

For columns with the SortMode property set to DataGridViewColumnSortMode.Automatic, the SortedColumn and SortOrder properties are set automatically and the appropriate sorting glyph is displayed. For columns with the SortMode property set to DataGridViewColumnSortMode.Programmatic, you must display the sorting glyph yourself through the DataGridViewColumnHeaderCell.SortGlyphDirection property.

You can customize the sorting operation used by this method by handling the SortCompare event. This event occurs only when the DataSource property has not been set.

When the DataSource property has been set, this method works for data-bound columns only. Data-bound columns have had their DataGridViewColumn.DataPropertyName property set. This causes the DataGridViewColumn.IsDataBound property to return true.

If your DataGridView control contains both bound and unbound columns, you must implement virtual mode to maintain the values of the unbound columns when the control is sorted by a bound column. You can do this by setting the VirtualMode property to true and handling the CellValueNeeded event. If the column is editable, you should also handle the CellValuePushed event. For more information about virtual mode, see How to: Implement Virtual Mode in the Windows Forms DataGridView Control. Sorting by unbound columns when the control is data-bound is not supported.

The following code example demonstrates how to use the Sort in a programmatic sort.

private void sortButton_Click(object sender, System.EventArgs e)
    // Check which column is selected, otherwise set NewColumn to null.
    DataGridViewColumn newColumn =
        DataGridViewElementStates.Selected) == 1 ?
        dataGridView1.SelectedColumns[0] : null;

    DataGridViewColumn oldColumn = dataGridView1.SortedColumn;
    ListSortDirection direction;

    // If oldColumn is null, then the DataGridView is not currently sorted. 
    if (oldColumn != null)
        // Sort the same column again, reversing the SortOrder. 
        if (oldColumn == newColumn &&
            dataGridView1.SortOrder == SortOrder.Ascending)
            direction = ListSortDirection.Descending;
            // Sort a new column and remove the old SortGlyph.
            direction = ListSortDirection.Ascending;
            oldColumn.HeaderCell.SortGlyphDirection = SortOrder.None;
        direction = ListSortDirection.Ascending;

    // If no column has been selected, display an error dialog  box. 
    if (newColumn == null)
        MessageBox.Show("Select a single column and try again.",
            "Error: Invalid Selection", MessageBoxButtons.OK,
        dataGridView1.Sort(newColumn, direction);
        newColumn.HeaderCell.SortGlyphDirection =
            direction == ListSortDirection.Ascending ?
            SortOrder.Ascending : SortOrder.Descending;

Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP SP2, Windows XP Media Center Edition, Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, Windows XP Starter Edition, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2000 SP4, Windows Millennium Edition, Windows 98

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

.NET Framework

Supported in: 3.5, 3.0, 2.0

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