Data Structure & Algorithm in Java

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Internal and External Sorting

Here are the key explanation of Internal and External Sorting:

internal sorting algorithm thumbnail
characteristics of internal sorting
characteristics of external sorting

Difference between Internal and External Sorting:

Here are the key difference between Internal and External sorting:

AspectInternal SortingExternal Sorting
DataEntire dataset fits in main memory (RAM)Dataset exceeds main memory capacity, stored in secondary storage (disk)
SpeedGenerally faster due to direct access to memorySlower due to disk access which is slower compared to main memory
Memory UsageRequires enough memory to hold entire datasetUses memory for buffering and processing chunks of data
I/O OperationsMinimal I/O operations, typically limited to input and outputInvolves frequent I/O operations for reading from and writing to disk
Sorting AlgorithmCan use algorithms like quicksort, mergesort, heapsort, etc.Often employs external sorting algorithms like external mergesort, polyphase mergesort, etc.
EfficiencyHighly efficient for small to medium-sized datasetsEfficient for large datasets but may suffer from slower performance compared to internal sorting for smaller datasets
ApplicationSuitable for datasets that easily fit into memoryNecessary for handling large datasets that cannot fit into memory
ExamplesSorting small arrays, lists, or database tables in memorySorting large databases, files, or datasets stored on disk

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