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Old 03-Oct-2015, 11:57
b15026649 b15026649 is offline
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Can you help explain this Merge sort code to me please ?

I'm new at programming so please bare with me. I understand the concept of the Merge sort, we're sorting an array by dividing it, using an other array. but what I dont get is the MergeSort function and what those instructions do exactly. Can you explain the steps in plain English for me please ?
Thank you

CPP / C++ / C Code:
void partition(int arr[],int low,int high){

    int mid;


void mergeSort(int arr[],int low,int mid,int high){

    int i,m,k,l,temp[MAX];




Old 07-Oct-2015, 09:59
davekw7x davekw7x is offline
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Re: Can you help explain this Merge sort code to me please ?

In a nutshell...
The function named partition() is called recursively to subdivide the original array into subarrays with one element each and then recombine the subarrays back into the original array in sorted order.

You could instrument the code by placing print statements at strategic places in the functions to show values of the arguments and contents of the original array and the temp array at each step.

Then create a main() function something like
CPP / C++ / C Code:
#include <stdio.h>

void partition(int arr[], int low, int high);
void mergeSort(int arr[], int low, int mid, int high);

#define SIZE 5
#define MAX SIZE

int main()
    int i;
    int original[SIZE] = {1, -2, 5, 4, 3};
    printf("Original   : ");
    for (i = 0; i < SIZE; i++) {
        printf(" %d", original[i]);

    partition(original, 0, SIZE);

    printf("After sort: ");
    for (i = 0; i < SIZE; i++) {
        printf(" %d", original[i]);

    return 0;

/* Code for the two functions goes here. */

Output could look something like

Original : 1 -2 5 4 3
. Results of print statements sprinkled throughout the functions.
After sort: -2 1 3 4 5

On the other hand...
Considering that some books devote an entire chapter to the topic, maybe instead of having someone try to figure out how to help you see how to drill down to the bottom of the code, it would be better to get code from a place that also offers some explanation. Maybe even some comments in the code itself.

For example Wikipedia - Merge sort. The first example, Top-down Implementation, has code that is similar to the code in your post.


Sometimes I just can't help myself...

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