Rotate array clockwise

I have a two dimensional array that I need to rotate 90 degrees clockwise, however I keep getting arrayindexoutofbounds...

public int[][] rorateArray(int[][] arr){ //first change the dimensions vertical length for horizontal length //and viceversa int[][] newArray = new int[arr[0].length][arr.length]; //invert values 90 degrees clockwise by starting from button of //array to top and from left to right int ii = 0; int jj = 0; for(int i=0; i<arr[0].length; i++){ for(int j=arr.length-1; j>=0; j--){ newArray[ii][jj] = arr[i][j]; jj++; } ii++; } return newArray; }

-------------Problems Reply------------

I don't understand your loops' logic -- shouldn't it be

for(int i=0; i<arr[0].length; i++){
for(int j=arr.length-1; j>=0; j--){
newArray[i][j] = arr[j][i];

Net of whether each index goes up, like i here, or down, like j here (and of whether either or both need to be "flipped" in the assignment, e.g using arr.length-1-j in lieu of plain j on one side of the = in the assignment;-), since arr dimensions are arr.length by arr[0].length, and vice versa for newArray, it seems to me that the first index on arr (second on newArray) must be the one spanning the range from 0 to arr.length-1 included, and the other range for the other index.

This is a kind of "basic dimensional analysis" (except that "dimension" is used in a different sense than normally goes with "dimensional analysis" which refers to physical dimensions, i.e., time, mass, length, &c;-). The issue of "flipping" and having each loop go up or down depend on visualizing exactly what you mean and I'm not the greatest "mental visualizer" so I think, in real life, I'd try the various variants of this "axis transposition" until I hit the one that's meant;-).

Here's a standard matrix clockwise rotation code:

static int[][] rotateCW(int[][] mat) {
final int M = mat.length;
final int N = mat[0].length;
int[][] ret = new int[N][M];
for (int r = 0; r < M; r++) {
for (int c = 0; c < N; c++) {
ret[c][M-1-r] = mat[r][c];
return ret;

Note a few things:

  • It improves readability to refer to the dimensions of a MxN matrix as M and N
  • It's traditional to use r, c instead of i, j to index row and column of a matrix
  • This is not the most robust implementation:
    • Does not ensure that mat is a valid MxN matrix, M>0, N>0
  • Use an explicit mapping formula instead of extraneous local variables
    • Makes program less complex and more readable

Here's a test harness:

import java.util.Arrays;

static void printMatrix(int[][] mat) {
System.out.println("Matrix = ");
for (int[] row : mat) {
public static void main(String[] args){
int[][] mat = {
{ 1, 2, 3 },
{ 4, 5, 6 }
// Matrix =
// [1, 2, 3]
// [4, 5, 6]

int[][] matCW = rotateCW(mat);
// Matrix =
// [4, 1]
// [5, 2]
// [6, 3]

Note the use of the for-each loop and java.util.Arrays in printMatrix. You should definitely familiarize yourself with them if you're working with arrays a lot in Java.

Links to Java matrix libraries

If you're working with matrices a lot, you may want to consider using a specialized matrix library instead.

  • JAMA:
  • UJMP:

Related questions

Technically, Java has array of arrays. Make sure you understand all the implications.

  • Performance comparison of array of arrays vs multidimensional arrays
  • Java Arrays.equals() returns false for two dimensional arrays.

jj++ is run i*j times, and that can't be good at all.

Try to reset jj in the outer loop.

public class RotateMatrix {

static int index_of_rows;
static int index_of_columns;
static int number_of_rows;
static int number_of_columns;

public static void main(String[] args) {
int[][] matrix={{1,2,3,4,5},
index_of_rows = matrix.length -1;
index_of_columns = matrix[0].length -1;
number_of_rows = matrix.length;
number_of_columns = matrix[0].length;

RotateMatrix rm = new RotateMatrix();

rm.printGrid(matrix);//before rotation


public int[][] rotate90CW(int[][] matrix, RotateMatrix rm) {

int[][] newMatrix = new int[number_of_rows][number_of_columns];
int totalNumber = (number_of_rows) * (number_of_columns);
int[] intArray = createSingleArray(matrix,totalNumber);

int a =0;
for(int c=number_of_columns; c>=0; c--)
for(int r=0; r<=number_of_rows; r++)
newMatrix[r][c] = intArray[a];
return newMatrix;

public int[] createSingleArray(int[][] matrix, int totalNumber) {
int a=0;
int[] intArray = new int[totalNumber];

for(int b=0;b<=index_of_rows; b++)
for(int c=0; c<=index_of_columns;c++)
intArray[a] = matrix[b][c];
return intArray;

public void printGrid(int[][] matrix) {
StringBuilder sb = new StringBuilder("--------------------------");

for(int i =0; i<=index_of_rows; i++)
System.out.println(sb.toString());//print each row
sb.delete(0, sb.length());//Then clear the row and build the next
for(int j=0; j<=index_of_columns;j++)


public int[][] rotate180CW(int[][] matrix, RotateMatrix rm)
return rm.rotate90CW(rm.rotate90CW(matrix, rm), rm);

public int[][] rotate270CW(int[][] matrix, RotateMatrix rm)
return rm.rotate90CW(rm.rotate90CW(rm.rotate90CW(matrix, rm), rm),rm);

public int[][] rotate360CW(int[][] matrix, RotateMatrix rm)
return rm.rotate90CW(rm.rotate90CW(rm.rotate90CW(rm.rotate90CW(matrix, rm), rm),rm),rm);


Category:java Views:0 Time:2010-05-10

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