Implementing Quicksort Programs

Robert Sedgewick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

196 Scopus citations


This paper is a practical study of how to implement the Quicksort sorting algorithm and its best variants on real computers, including how to apply various code optimization techniques. A detailed implementation combining the most effective improvements to Quicksort is given, along with a discussion of how to implement it in assembly language. Analytic results describing the performance of the programs are summarized. A variety of special situations are considered from a practical standpoint to illustrate Quicksort's wide applicability as an internal sorting method which requires negligible extra storage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)847-857
Number of pages11
JournalCommunications of the ACM
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 1978

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Computer Science


  • Quicksort
  • analysis of algorithms
  • code optimization
  • sorting


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