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$sortByCount (aggregation)

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Definition

$sortByCount

New in version 3.4.

Groups incoming documents based on the value of a specified expression, then computes the count of documents in each distinct group.

Each output document contains two fields: an _id field containing the distinct grouping value, and a count field containing the number of documents belonging to that grouping or category.

The documents are sorted by count in descending order.

The $sortByCount stage has the following prototype form:

{ $sortByCount:  <expression> }
Field Description
expression Expression to group by. To specify a field path, prefix the field name with a dollar sign $ and enclose it in quotes. The expression can not evaluate to an object.

Behavior

The $sortByCount stage is equivalent to the following $group + $sort sequence:

{ $group: { _id: <expression>, count: { $sum: 1 } } },
{ $sort: { count: -1 } }

Example

Consider a collection exhibits with the following documents:

{ "_id" : 1, "title" : "The Pillars of Society", "artist" : "Grosz", "year" : 1926, "tags" : [ "painting", "satire", "Expressionism", "caricature" ] }
{ "_id" : 2, "title" : "Melancholy III", "artist" : "Munch", "year" : 1902, "tags" : [ "woodcut", "Expressionism" ] }
{ "_id" : 3, "title" : "Dancer", "artist" : "Miro", "year" : 1925, "tags" : [ "oil", "Surrealism", "painting" ] }
{ "_id" : 4, "title" : "The Great Wave off Kanagawa", "artist" : "Hokusai", "tags" : [ "woodblock", "ukiyo-e" ] }
{ "_id" : 5, "title" : "The Persistence of Memory", "artist" : "Dali", "year" : 1931, "tags" : [ "Surrealism", "painting", "oil" ] }
{ "_id" : 6, "title" : "Composition VII", "artist" : "Kandinsky", "year" : 1913, "tags" : [ "oil", "painting", "abstract" ] }
{ "_id" : 7, "title" : "The Scream", "artist" : "Munch", "year" : 1893, "tags" : [ "Expressionism", "painting", "oil" ] }
{ "_id" : 8, "title" : "Blue Flower", "artist" : "O'Keefe", "year" : 1918, "tags" : [ "abstract", "painting" ] }

The following operation unwinds the tags array and uses the $sortByCount stage to count the number of documents associated with each tag:

db.exhibits.aggregate( [ { $unwind: "$tags" },  { $sortByCount: "$tags" } ] )

The operation returns the following documents, sorted in descending order by count:

{ "_id" : "painting", "count" : 6 }
{ "_id" : "oil", "count" : 4 }
{ "_id" : "Expressionism", "count" : 3 }
{ "_id" : "Surrealism", "count" : 2 }
{ "_id" : "abstract", "count" : 2 }
{ "_id" : "woodblock", "count" : 1 }
{ "_id" : "woodcut", "count" : 1 }
{ "_id" : "ukiyo-e", "count" : 1 }
{ "_id" : "satire", "count" : 1 }
{ "_id" : "caricature", "count" : 1 }