descending - sort map by value java




Sort a Map<Key, Value> by values (20)

Important note:

This code can break in multiple ways. If you intend to use the code provided, be sure to read the comments as well to be aware of the implications. For example, values can no longer be retrieved by their key. (get always returns null.)


It seems much easier than all of the foregoing. Use a TreeMap as follows:

public class Testing {
    public static void main(String[] args) {
        HashMap<String, Double> map = new HashMap<String, Double>();
        ValueComparator bvc = new ValueComparator(map);
        TreeMap<String, Double> sorted_map = new TreeMap<String, Double>(bvc);

        map.put("A", 99.5);
        map.put("B", 67.4);
        map.put("C", 67.4);
        map.put("D", 67.3);

        System.out.println("unsorted map: " + map);
        sorted_map.putAll(map);
        System.out.println("results: " + sorted_map);
    }
}

class ValueComparator implements Comparator<String> {
    Map<String, Double> base;

    public ValueComparator(Map<String, Double> base) {
        this.base = base;
    }

    // Note: this comparator imposes orderings that are inconsistent with
    // equals.
    public int compare(String a, String b) {
        if (base.get(a) >= base.get(b)) {
            return -1;
        } else {
            return 1;
        } // returning 0 would merge keys
    }
}

Output:

unsorted map: {D=67.3, A=99.5, B=67.4, C=67.4}
results: {D=67.3, B=67.4, C=67.4, A=99.5}

I am relatively new to Java, and often find that I need to sort a Map<Key, Value> on the values.

Since the values are not unique, I find myself converting the keySet into an array, and sorting that array through array sort with a custom comparator that sorts on the value associated with the key.

Is there an easier way?


Best Approach

import java.util.ArrayList;
import java.util.Collections;
import java.util.Comparator;
import java.util.HashMap;
import java.util.List;
import java.util.Map;
import java.util.Set;
import java.util.Map.Entry; 

public class OrderByValue {

  public static void main(String a[]){
    Map<String, Integer> map = new HashMap<String, Integer>();
    map.put("java", 20);
    map.put("C++", 45);
    map.put("Unix", 67);
    map.put("MAC", 26);
    map.put("Why this kolavari", 93);
    Set<Entry<String, Integer>> set = map.entrySet();
    List<Entry<String, Integer>> list = new ArrayList<Entry<String, Integer>>(set);
    Collections.sort( list, new Comparator<Map.Entry<String, Integer>>()
    {
        public int compare( Map.Entry<String, Integer> o1, Map.Entry<String, Integer> o2 )
        {
            return (o1.getValue()).compareTo( o2.getValue() );//Ascending order
            //return (o2.getValue()).compareTo( o1.getValue() );//Descending order
        }
    } );
    for(Map.Entry<String, Integer> entry:list){
        System.out.println(entry.getKey()+" ==== "+entry.getValue());
    }
  }}

Output

java ==== 20

MAC ==== 26

C++ ==== 45

Unix ==== 67

Why this kolavari ==== 93

Afaik the most cleaner way is utilizing collections to sort map on value:

Map<String, Long> map = new HashMap<String, Long>();
// populate with data to sort on Value
// use datastructure designed for sorting

Queue queue = new PriorityQueue( map.size(), new MapComparable() );
queue.addAll( map.entrySet() );

// get a sorted map
LinkedHashMap<String, Long> linkedMap = new LinkedHashMap<String, Long>();

for (Map.Entry<String, Long> entry; (entry = queue.poll())!=null;) {
    linkedMap.put(entry.getKey(), entry.getValue());
}

public static class MapComparable implements Comparator<Map.Entry<String, Long>>{

  public int compare(Entry<String, Long> e1, Entry<String, Long> e2) {
    return e1.getValue().compareTo(e2.getValue());
  }
}

Based on @devinmoore code, a map sorting methods using generics and supporting both ascending and descending ordering.

/**
 * Sort a map by it's keys in ascending order. 
 *  
 * @return new instance of {@link LinkedHashMap} contained sorted entries of supplied map.
 * @author Maxim Veksler
 */
public static <K, V> LinkedHashMap<K, V> sortMapByKey(final Map<K, V> map) {
    return sortMapByKey(map, SortingOrder.ASCENDING);
}

/**
 * Sort a map by it's values in ascending order.
 *  
 * @return new instance of {@link LinkedHashMap} contained sorted entries of supplied map.
 * @author Maxim Veksler
 */
public static <K, V> LinkedHashMap<K, V> sortMapByValue(final Map<K, V> map) {
    return sortMapByValue(map, SortingOrder.ASCENDING);
}

/**
 * Sort a map by it's keys.
 *  
 * @param sortingOrder {@link SortingOrder} enum specifying requested sorting order. 
 * @return new instance of {@link LinkedHashMap} contained sorted entries of supplied map.
 * @author Maxim Veksler
 */
public static <K, V> LinkedHashMap<K, V> sortMapByKey(final Map<K, V> map, final SortingOrder sortingOrder) {
    Comparator<Map.Entry<K, V>> comparator = new Comparator<Entry<K,V>>() {
        public int compare(Entry<K, V> o1, Entry<K, V> o2) {
            return comparableCompare(o1.getKey(), o2.getKey(), sortingOrder);
        }
    };

    return sortMap(map, comparator);
}

/**
 * Sort a map by it's values.
 *  
 * @param sortingOrder {@link SortingOrder} enum specifying requested sorting order. 
 * @return new instance of {@link LinkedHashMap} contained sorted entries of supplied map.
 * @author Maxim Veksler
 */
public static <K, V> LinkedHashMap<K, V> sortMapByValue(final Map<K, V> map, final SortingOrder sortingOrder) {
    Comparator<Map.Entry<K, V>> comparator = new Comparator<Entry<K,V>>() {
        public int compare(Entry<K, V> o1, Entry<K, V> o2) {
            return comparableCompare(o1.getValue(), o2.getValue(), sortingOrder);
        }
    };

    return sortMap(map, comparator);
}

@SuppressWarnings("unchecked")
private static <T> int comparableCompare(T o1, T o2, SortingOrder sortingOrder) {
    int compare = ((Comparable<T>)o1).compareTo(o2);

    switch (sortingOrder) {
    case ASCENDING:
        return compare;
    case DESCENDING:
        return (-1) * compare;
    }

    return 0;
}

/**
 * Sort a map by supplied comparator logic.
 *  
 * @return new instance of {@link LinkedHashMap} contained sorted entries of supplied map.
 * @author Maxim Veksler
 */
public static <K, V> LinkedHashMap<K, V> sortMap(final Map<K, V> map, final Comparator<Map.Entry<K, V>> comparator) {
    // Convert the map into a list of key,value pairs.
    List<Map.Entry<K, V>> mapEntries = new LinkedList<Map.Entry<K, V>>(map.entrySet());

    // Sort the converted list according to supplied comparator.
    Collections.sort(mapEntries, comparator);

    // Build a new ordered map, containing the same entries as the old map.  
    LinkedHashMap<K, V> result = new LinkedHashMap<K, V>(map.size() + (map.size() / 20));
    for(Map.Entry<K, V> entry : mapEntries) {
        // We iterate on the mapEntries list which is sorted by the comparator putting new entries into 
        // the targeted result which is a sorted map. 
        result.put(entry.getKey(), entry.getValue());
    }

    return result;
}

/**
 * Sorting order enum, specifying request result sort behavior.
 * @author Maxim Veksler
 *
 */
public static enum SortingOrder {
    /**
     * Resulting sort will be from smaller to biggest.
     */
    ASCENDING,
    /**
     * Resulting sort will be from biggest to smallest.
     */
    DESCENDING
}

Depending on the context, using java.util.LinkedHashMap<T> which rememebers the order in which items are placed into the map. Otherwise, if you need to sort values based on their natural ordering, I would recommend maintaining a separate List which can be sorted via Collections.sort().


For sure the solution of Stephen is really great, but for those who can't use Guava:

Here's my solution for sorting by value a map. This solution handle the case where there are twice the same value etc...

// If you want to sort a map by value, and if there can be twice the same value:

// here is your original map
Map<String,Integer> mapToSortByValue = new HashMap<String, Integer>();
mapToSortByValue.put("A", 3);
mapToSortByValue.put("B", 1);
mapToSortByValue.put("C", 3);
mapToSortByValue.put("D", 5);
mapToSortByValue.put("E", -1);
mapToSortByValue.put("F", 1000);
mapToSortByValue.put("G", 79);
mapToSortByValue.put("H", 15);

// Sort all the map entries by value
Set<Map.Entry<String,Integer>> set = new TreeSet<Map.Entry<String,Integer>>(
        new Comparator<Map.Entry<String,Integer>>(){
            @Override
            public int compare(Map.Entry<String,Integer> obj1, Map.Entry<String,Integer> obj2) {
                Integer val1 = obj1.getValue();
                Integer val2 = obj2.getValue();
                // DUPLICATE VALUE CASE
                // If the values are equals, we can't return 0 because the 2 entries would be considered
                // as equals and one of them would be deleted (because we use a set, no duplicate, remember!)
                int compareValues = val1.compareTo(val2);
                if ( compareValues == 0 ) {
                    String key1 = obj1.getKey();
                    String key2 = obj2.getKey();
                    int compareKeys = key1.compareTo(key2);
                    if ( compareKeys == 0 ) {
                        // what you return here will tell us if you keep REAL KEY-VALUE duplicates in your set
                        // if you want to, do whatever you want but do not return 0 (but don't break the comparator contract!)
                        return 0;
                    }
                    return compareKeys;
                }
                return compareValues;
            }
        }
);
set.addAll(mapToSortByValue.entrySet());


// OK NOW OUR SET IS SORTED COOL!!!!

// And there's nothing more to do: the entries are sorted by value!
for ( Map.Entry<String,Integer> entry : set ) {
    System.out.println("Set entries: " + entry.getKey() + " -> " + entry.getValue());
}




// But if you add them to an hashmap
Map<String,Integer> myMap = new HashMap<String,Integer>();
// When iterating over the set the order is still good in the println...
for ( Map.Entry<String,Integer> entry : set ) {
    System.out.println("Added to result map entries: " + entry.getKey() + " " + entry.getValue());
    myMap.put(entry.getKey(), entry.getValue());
}

// But once they are in the hashmap, the order is not kept!
for ( Integer value : myMap.values() ) {
    System.out.println("Result map values: " + value);
}
// Also this way doesn't work:
// Logic because the entryset is a hashset for hashmaps and not a treeset
// (and even if it was a treeset, it would be on the keys only)
for ( Map.Entry<String,Integer> entry : myMap.entrySet() ) {
    System.out.println("Result map entries: " + entry.getKey() + " -> " + entry.getValue());
}


// CONCLUSION:
// If you want to iterate on a map ordered by value, you need to remember:
// 1) Maps are only sorted by keys, so you can't sort them directly by value
// 2) So you simply CAN'T return a map to a sortMapByValue function
// 3) You can't reverse the keys and the values because you have duplicate values
//    This also means you can't neither use Guava/Commons bidirectionnal treemaps or stuff like that

// SOLUTIONS
// So you can:
// 1) only sort the values which is easy, but you loose the key/value link (since you have duplicate values)
// 2) sort the map entries, but don't forget to handle the duplicate value case (like i did)
// 3) if you really need to return a map, use a LinkedHashMap which keep the insertion order

The exec: http://www.ideone.com/dq3Lu

The output:

Set entries: E -> -1
Set entries: B -> 1
Set entries: A -> 3
Set entries: C -> 3
Set entries: D -> 5
Set entries: H -> 15
Set entries: G -> 79
Set entries: F -> 1000
Added to result map entries: E -1
Added to result map entries: B 1
Added to result map entries: A 3
Added to result map entries: C 3
Added to result map entries: D 5
Added to result map entries: H 15
Added to result map entries: G 79
Added to result map entries: F 1000
Result map values: 5
Result map values: -1
Result map values: 1000
Result map values: 79
Result map values: 3
Result map values: 1
Result map values: 3
Result map values: 15
Result map entries: D -> 5
Result map entries: E -> -1
Result map entries: F -> 1000
Result map entries: G -> 79
Result map entries: A -> 3
Result map entries: B -> 1
Result map entries: C -> 3
Result map entries: H -> 15

Hope it will help some folks


Here is an OO solution (i.e., doesn't use static methods):

import java.util.Collections;
import java.util.Comparator;
import java.util.HashMap;
import java.util.Iterator;
import java.util.LinkedList;
import java.util.LinkedHashMap;
import java.util.List;
import java.util.Map;

public class SortableValueMap<K, V extends Comparable<V>>
  extends LinkedHashMap<K, V> {
  public SortableValueMap() { }

  public SortableValueMap( Map<K, V> map ) {
    super( map );
  }

  public void sortByValue() {
    List<Map.Entry<K, V>> list = new LinkedList<Map.Entry<K, V>>( entrySet() );

    Collections.sort( list, new Comparator<Map.Entry<K, V>>() {
      public int compare( Map.Entry<K, V> entry1, Map.Entry<K, V> entry2 ) {
        return entry1.getValue().compareTo( entry2.getValue() );
      }
    });

    clear();

    for( Map.Entry<K, V> entry : list ) {
      put( entry.getKey(), entry.getValue() );
    }
  }

  private static void print( String text, Map<String, Double> map ) {
    System.out.println( text );

    for( String key : map.keySet() ) {
      System.out.println( "key/value: " + key + "/" + map.get( key ) );
    }
  }

  public static void main( String[] args ) {
    SortableValueMap<String, Double> map =
      new SortableValueMap<String, Double>();

    map.put( "A", 67.5 );
    map.put( "B", 99.5 );
    map.put( "C", 82.4 );
    map.put( "D", 42.0 );

    print( "Unsorted map", map );
    map.sortByValue();
    print( "Sorted map", map );
  }
}

Hereby donated to the public domain.


Here's a generic-friendly version:

public class MapUtil {
    public static <K, V extends Comparable<? super V>> Map<K, V> sortByValue(Map<K, V> map) {
        List<Entry<K, V>> list = new ArrayList<>(map.entrySet());
        list.sort(Entry.comparingByValue());

        Map<K, V> result = new LinkedHashMap<>();
        for (Entry<K, V> entry : list) {
            result.put(entry.getKey(), entry.getValue());
        }

        return result;
    }
}

I've merged the solutions of user157196 and Carter Page:

class MapUtil {

    public static <K, V extends Comparable<? super V>> Map<K, V> sortByValue( Map<K, V> map ){
        ValueComparator<K,V> bvc =  new ValueComparator<K,V>(map);
        TreeMap<K,V> sorted_map = new TreeMap<K,V>(bvc);
        sorted_map.putAll(map);
        return sorted_map;
    }

}

class ValueComparator<K, V extends Comparable<? super V>> implements Comparator<K> {

    Map<K, V> base;
    public ValueComparator(Map<K, V> base) {
        this.base = base;
    }

    public int compare(K a, K b) {
        int result = (base.get(a).compareTo(base.get(b)));
        if (result == 0) result=1;
        // returning 0 would merge keys
        return result;
    }
}

If you have duplicate keys and only a small set of data (<1000) and your code is not performance critical you can just do the following:

Map<String,Integer> tempMap=new HashMap<String,Integer>(inputUnsortedMap);
LinkedHashMap<String,Integer> sortedOutputMap=new LinkedHashMap<String,Integer>();

for(int i=0;i<inputUnsortedMap.size();i++){
    Map.Entry<String,Integer> maxEntry=null;
    Integer maxValue=-1;
    for(Map.Entry<String,Integer> entry:tempMap.entrySet()){
        if(entry.getValue()>maxValue){
            maxValue=entry.getValue();
            maxEntry=entry;
        }
    }
    tempMap.remove(maxEntry.getKey());
    sortedOutputMap.put(maxEntry.getKey(),maxEntry.getValue());
}

inputUnsortedMap is the input to the code.

The variable sortedOutputMap will contain the data in decending order when iterated over. To change order just change > to a < in the if statement.

Is not the fastest sort but does the job without any additional dependencies.


Java 8 offers a new answer: convert the entries into a stream, and use the comparator combinators from Map.Entry:

Stream<Map.Entry<K,V>> sorted =
    map.entrySet().stream()
       .sorted(Map.Entry.comparingByValue());

This will let you consume the entries sorted in ascending order of value. If you want descending value, simply reverse the comparator:

Stream<Map.Entry<K,V>> sorted =
    map.entrySet().stream()
       .sorted(Collections.reverseOrder(Map.Entry.comparingByValue()));

If the values are not comparable, you can pass an explicit comparator:

Stream<Map.Entry<K,V>> sorted =
    map.entrySet().stream()
       .sorted(Map.Entry.comparingByValue(comparator));

You can then proceed to use other stream operations to consume the data. For example, if you want the top 10 in a new map:

Map<K,V> topTen =
    map.entrySet().stream()
       .sorted(Map.Entry.comparingByValue(Comparator.reverseOrder()))
       .limit(10)
       .collect(Collectors.toMap(
          Map.Entry::getKey, Map.Entry::getValue, (e1, e2) -> e1, LinkedHashMap::new));

Or print to System.out:

map.entrySet().stream()
   .sorted(Map.Entry.comparingByValue())
   .forEach(System.out::println);

Major problem. If you use the first answer (Google takes you here), change the comparator to add an equal clause, otherwise you cannot get values from the sorted_map by keys:

public int compare(String a, String b) {
        if (base.get(a) > base.get(b)) {
            return 1;
        } else if (base.get(a) < base.get(b)){
            return -1;
        } 

        return 0;
        // returning 0 would merge keys
    }

Some simple changes in order to have a sorted map with pairs that have duplicate values. In the compare method (class ValueComparator) when values are equal do not return 0 but return the result of comparing the 2 keys. Keys are distinct in a map so you succeed to keep duplicate values (which are sorted by keys by the way). So the above example could be modified like this:

    public int compare(Object a, Object b) {

        if((Double)base.get(a) < (Double)base.get(b)) {
          return 1;
        } else if((Double)base.get(a) == (Double)base.get(b)) {
          return ((String)a).compareTo((String)b);
        } else {
          return -1;
        }
      }
    }

Sorting the keys requires the Comparator to look up each value for each comparison. A more scalable solution would use the entrySet directly, since then the value would be immediately available for each comparison (although I haven't backed this up by numbers).

Here's a generic version of such a thing:

public static <K, V extends Comparable<? super V>> List<K> getKeysSortedByValue(Map<K, V> map) {
    final int size = map.size();
    final List<Map.Entry<K, V>> list = new ArrayList<Map.Entry<K, V>>(size);
    list.addAll(map.entrySet());
    final ValueComparator<V> cmp = new ValueComparator<V>();
    Collections.sort(list, cmp);
    final List<K> keys = new ArrayList<K>(size);
    for (int i = 0; i < size; i++) {
        keys.set(i, list.get(i).getKey());
    }
    return keys;
}

private static final class ValueComparator<V extends Comparable<? super V>>
                                     implements Comparator<Map.Entry<?, V>> {
    public int compare(Map.Entry<?, V> o1, Map.Entry<?, V> o2) {
        return o1.getValue().compareTo(o2.getValue());
    }
}

There are ways to lessen memory rotation for the above solution. The first ArrayList created could for instance be re-used as a return value; this would require suppression of some generics warnings, but it might be worth it for re-usable library code. Also, the Comparator does not have to be re-allocated at every invocation.

Here's a more efficient albeit less appealing version:

public static <K, V extends Comparable<? super V>> List<K> getKeysSortedByValue2(Map<K, V> map) {
    final int size = map.size();
    final List reusedList = new ArrayList(size);
    final List<Map.Entry<K, V>> meView = reusedList;
    meView.addAll(map.entrySet());
    Collections.sort(meView, SINGLE);
    final List<K> keyView = reusedList;
    for (int i = 0; i < size; i++) {
        keyView.set(i, meView.get(i).getKey());
    }
    return keyView;
}

private static final Comparator SINGLE = new ValueComparator();

Finally, if you need to continously access the sorted information (rather than just sorting it once in a while), you can use an additional multi map. Let me know if you need more details...


The commons-collections library contains a solution called TreeBidiMap. Or, you could have a look at the Google Collections API. It has TreeMultimap which you could use.

And if you don't want to use these framework... they come with source code.


There are a lot of answers for this question already, but none provided me what I was looking for, a map implementation that returns keys and entries sorted by the associated value, and maintains this property as keys and values are modified in the map. Two other questions ask for this specifically.

I cooked up a generic friendly example that solves this use case. This implementation does not honor all of the contracts of the Map interface, such as reflecting value changes and removals in the sets return from keySet() and entrySet() in the original object. I felt such a solution would be too large to include in a answer. If I manage to create a more complete implementation, perhaps I will post it to Github and then to it link in an updated version of this answer.

import java.util.*;

/**
 * A map where {@link #keySet()} and {@link #entrySet()} return sets ordered
 * by associated values based on the the comparator provided at construction
 * time. The order of two or more keys with identical values is not defined.
 * <p>
 * Several contracts of the Map interface are not satisfied by this minimal
 * implementation.
 */
public class ValueSortedMap<K, V> extends HashMap<K, V> {
    protected Map<V, Collection<K>> valueToKeysMap;

    // uses natural order of value object, if any
    public ValueSortedMap() {
        this((Comparator<? super V>) null);
    }

    public ValueSortedMap(Comparator<? super V> valueComparator) {
        this.valueToKeysMap = new TreeMap<V, Collection<K>>(valueComparator);
    }

    public boolean containsValue(Object o) {
        return valueToKeysMap.containsKey(o);
    }

    public V put(K k, V v) {
        V oldV = null;
        if (containsKey(k)) {
            oldV = get(k);
            valueToKeysMap.get(oldV).remove(k);
        }
        super.put(k, v);
        if (!valueToKeysMap.containsKey(v)) {
            Collection<K> keys = new ArrayList<K>();
            keys.add(k);
            valueToKeysMap.put(v, keys);
        } else {
            valueToKeysMap.get(v).add(k);
        }
        return oldV;
    }

    public void putAll(Map<? extends K, ? extends V> m) {
        for (Map.Entry<? extends K, ? extends V> e : m.entrySet())
            put(e.getKey(), e.getValue());
    }

    public V remove(Object k) {
        V oldV = null;
        if (containsKey(k)) {
            oldV = get(k);
            super.remove(k);
            valueToKeysMap.get(oldV).remove(k);
        }
        return oldV;
    }

    public void clear() {
        super.clear();
        valueToKeysMap.clear();
    }

    public Set<K> keySet() {
        LinkedHashSet<K> ret = new LinkedHashSet<K>(size());
        for (V v : valueToKeysMap.keySet()) {
            Collection<K> keys = valueToKeysMap.get(v);
            ret.addAll(keys);
        }
        return ret;
    }

    public Set<Map.Entry<K, V>> entrySet() {
        LinkedHashSet<Map.Entry<K, V>> ret = new LinkedHashSet<Map.Entry<K, V>>(size());
        for (Collection<K> keys : valueToKeysMap.values()) {
            for (final K k : keys) {
                final V v = get(k);
                ret.add(new Map.Entry<K,V>() {
                    public K getKey() {
                        return k;
                    }

                    public V getValue() {
                        return v;
                    }

                    public V setValue(V v) {
                        throw new UnsupportedOperationException();
                    }
                });
            }
        }
        return ret;
    }
}

This is just too complicated. Maps were not supposed to do such job as sorting them by Value. The easiest way is to create your own Class so it fits your requirement.

In example lower you are supposed to add TreeMap a comparator at place where * is. But by java API it gives comparator only keys, not values. All of examples stated here is based on 2 Maps. One Hash and one new Tree. Which is odd.

The example:

Map<Driver driver, Float time> map = new TreeMap<Driver driver, Float time>(*);

So change the map into a set this way:

ResultComparator rc = new ResultComparator();
Set<Results> set = new TreeSet<Results>(rc);

You will create class Results,

public class Results {
    private Driver driver;
    private Float time;

    public Results(Driver driver, Float time) {
        this.driver = driver;
        this.time = time;
    }

    public Float getTime() {
        return time;
    }

    public void setTime(Float time) {
        this.time = time;
    }

    public Driver getDriver() {
        return driver;
    }

    public void setDriver (Driver driver) {
        this.driver = driver;
    }
}

and the Comparator class:

public class ResultsComparator implements Comparator<Results> {
    public int compare(Results t, Results t1) {
        if (t.getTime() < t1.getTime()) {
            return 1;
        } else if (t.getTime() == t1.getTime()) {
            return 0;
        } else {
            return -1;
        }
    }
}

This way you can easily add more dependencies.

And as the last point I'll add simple iterator:

Iterator it = set.iterator();
while (it.hasNext()) {
    Results r = (Results)it.next();
    System.out.println( r.getDriver().toString
        //or whatever that is related to Driver class -getName() getSurname()
        + " "
        + r.getTime()
        );
}

To accomplish this with the new features in Java 8:

import static java.util.Map.Entry.comparingByValue;
import static java.util.stream.Collectors.toList;

<K, V> List<Entry<K, V>> sort(Map<K, V> map, Comparator<? super V> comparator) {
    return map.entrySet().stream().sorted(comparingByValue(comparator)).collect(toList());
}

The entries are ordered by their values using the given comparator. Alternatively, if your values are mutually comparable, no explicit comparator is needed:

<K, V extends Comparable<? super V>> List<Entry<K, V>> sort(Map<K, V> map) {
    return map.entrySet().stream().sorted(comparingByValue()).collect(toList());
}

The returned list is a snapshot of the given map at the time this method is called, so neither will reflect subsequent changes to the other. For a live iterable view of the map:

<K, V extends Comparable<? super V>> Iterable<Entry<K, V>> sort(Map<K, V> map) {
    return () -> map.entrySet().stream().sorted(comparingByValue()).iterator();
}

The returned iterable creates a fresh snapshot of the given map each time it's iterated, so barring concurrent modification, it will always reflect the current state of the map.


While I agree that the constant need to sort a map is probably a smell, I think the following code is the easiest way to do it without using a different data structure.

public class MapUtilities {

public static <K, V extends Comparable<V>> List<Entry<K, V>> sortByValue(Map<K, V> map) {
    List<Entry<K, V>> entries = new ArrayList<Entry<K, V>>(map.entrySet());
    Collections.sort(entries, new ByValue<K, V>());
    return entries;
}

private static class ByValue<K, V extends Comparable<V>> implements Comparator<Entry<K, V>> {
    public int compare(Entry<K, V> o1, Entry<K, V> o2) {
        return o1.getValue().compareTo(o2.getValue());
    }
}

}

And here is an embarrassingly incomplete unit test:

public class MapUtilitiesTest extends TestCase {
public void testSorting() {
    HashMap<String, Integer> map = new HashMap<String, Integer>();
    map.put("One", 1);
    map.put("Two", 2);
    map.put("Three", 3);

    List<Map.Entry<String, Integer>> sorted = MapUtilities.sortByValue(map);
    assertEquals("First", "One", sorted.get(0).getKey());
    assertEquals("Second", "Two", sorted.get(1).getKey());
    assertEquals("Third", "Three", sorted.get(2).getKey());
}

}

The result is a sorted list of Map.Entry objects, from which you can obtain the keys and values.


With Java 8, you can use the streams api to do it in a significantly less verbose way:

Map<K, V> sortedMap = map.entrySet().stream()
                         .sorted(Entry.comparingByValue())
                         .collect(Collectors.toMap(Entry::getKey, Entry::getValue, (e1, e2) -> e1, LinkedHashMap::new));






collections