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Five Reasons My ngMaterial Table won't sort!

I've been doing some prototype work with the ngMaterial grid and had a problem where the grid would not sort. Here are a few things to check if this happens to you.

  1. Import the MatSortModule Module: Be sure that your @NgModule definition includes the MatSortModule:

    declarations: [
    imports: [
    bootstrap: [AppComponent]

    Without this, the sorting will not work.

  2. Specify the matSort header: Be sure to specify the matSort header on your table grid:

    <table mat-table [dataSource]="rowData" matSort class="mat-elevation-z8"

    // rest of the table definition here

    Without that you won't be able to click on the headers.

  3. Wrap Your Data Source in a MatTableDataSource: If you do not wrap your own datasource--probably an array--in the MatTableDataSource class you'll have to write your own sorting algorithm to affect your data because it won't work out of the box.

    this.rowData = new MatTableDataSource(myRowDataArray);

    Do this because it makes your life easier.

  4. Tell the data source about your sort: Your MatTableDataSource does not know about the sort by default. Get a ViewChild instance to the sort in your code:

    @ViewChild(MatSort) sort: MatSort;

    And apply that:

    ngOnInit() {
    this.rowData.sort = this.sort;

    Hopefully you got this far and your table is sorting now.

  5. Write Your Own Sort: If you're avoiding using the MatTableDataSource for some reason, you'll have to write your own sort algorithm. In the HTML, listen for the matSortChange event:

    <table mat-table [dataSource]="rowData" matSort class="mat-elevation-z8" (matSortChange)="onMatSortChange()">
    // rest of the table definition here

    And in your code:

    // do something to modify your data source here.

I've found the documentation lacking for ngMaterial, but so far we plan on plunging ahead with it. Hopefully this helped someone out.

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