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Sort Unary Logical Operator

Sort is a unary logical operator that represents the following operators in a logical plan:

Creating Instance

Sort takes the following to be created:

Execution Planning

Sort logical operator is resolved to SortExec unary physical operator by BasicOperators execution planning strategy.

Catalyst DSL

Catalyst DSL defines orderBy and sortBy operators to create Sort operators (with the global flag enabled or not, respectively).

import org.apache.spark.sql.catalyst.dsl.expressions._
import org.apache.spark.sql.catalyst.dsl.plans._
val t1 = table("t1")
val globalSortById = t1.orderBy('id.asc_nullsLast)
// Note true for the global flag
scala> println(globalSortById.numberedTreeString)
00 'Sort ['id ASC NULLS LAST], true
01 +- 'UnresolvedRelation `t1`
val partitionOnlySortById = t1.sortBy('id.asc_nullsLast)
// Note false for the global flag
scala> println(partitionOnlySortById.numberedTreeString)
00 'Sort ['id ASC NULLS LAST], false
01 +- 'UnresolvedRelation `t1`


// Using the feature of ordinal literal
val ids = Seq(1,3,2).toDF("id").sort(lit(1))
val logicalPlan = ids.queryExecution.logical
scala> println(logicalPlan.numberedTreeString)
00 Sort [1 ASC NULLS FIRST], true
01 +- AnalysisBarrier
02       +- Project [value#22 AS id#24]
03          +- LocalRelation [value#22]

import org.apache.spark.sql.catalyst.plans.logical.Sort
val sortOp = logicalPlan.collect { case s: Sort => s }.head
scala> println(sortOp.numberedTreeString)
00 Sort [1 ASC NULLS FIRST], true
01 +- AnalysisBarrier
02       +- Project [value#22 AS id#24]
03          +- LocalRelation [value#22]
val nums = Seq((0, "zero"), (1, "one")).toDF("id", "name")
// Creates a Sort logical operator:
// - descending sort direction for id column (specified explicitly)
// - name column is wrapped with ascending sort direction
val numsOrdered = nums.sort('id.desc, 'name)
val logicalPlan = numsOrdered.queryExecution.logical
scala> println(logicalPlan.numberedTreeString)
00 'Sort ['id DESC NULLS LAST, 'name ASC NULLS FIRST], true
01 +- Project [_1#11 AS id#14, _2#12 AS name#15]
02    +- LocalRelation [_1#11, _2#12]