# Brent’s Cycle Detection Algorithm

Given a linked list, check if the the linked list has loop or not. Below diagram shows a linked list with a loop.

We have discussed Floyd’s algorithm to detect cycle in linked list.

**Brent’s cycle detection algorithm** is similar to floyd’s algorithm as it also uses two pointer technique. But there is some difference in their approaches. Here we make one pointer stationary till every iteration and teleport it to other pointer **at every power of two**. The start of the cycle is determined by the **smallest power of two** at which they meet. This improves upon the constant factor of Floyd’s algorithm by reducing the number of calls.

- Move fast pointer (or second_pointer) in powers of 2 until we find a loop. After every power, we reset slow pointer (or first_pointer) to previous value of second pointer. Reset length to 0 after every every power.
- The condition for loop testing is first_pointer and second_pointer become same. And loop is not present if second_pointer becomes NULL.
- When we come out of loop, we have length of loop.
- We reset first_pointer to head and second_pointer to node at position head + length.
- Now we move both pointers one by one to find beginning of loop.

**Comparison with Floyd’s Algorithm:**

1) Finds the length of loop in first cycle detection loop itself. No extra work is required for this.

2) We only move second in every iteration and avoid moving first (which can be costly if moving to next node involves evaluating a function).

## C++

`// CPP program to implement Brent's cycle ` `// detection algorithm to detect cycle in ` `// a linked list. ` `#include <stdio.h> ` `#include <stdlib.h> ` ` ` `/* Link list node */` `struct` `Node { ` ` ` `int` `data; ` ` ` `struct` `Node* next; ` `}; ` ` ` `/* This function detects loop in the list ` `If loop was there in the list then it returns, ` `the first node of loop otherwise returns NULL */` `struct` `Node* detectCycle(` `struct` `Node* head) ` `{ ` ` ` `// if head is null then no loop ` ` ` `if` `(head == NULL) ` ` ` `return` `NULL; ` ` ` ` ` `struct` `Node* first_pointer = head; ` ` ` `struct` `Node* second_pointer = head->next; ` ` ` `int` `power = 1; ` ` ` `int` `length = 1; ` ` ` ` ` `// This loop runs till we find the loop. ` ` ` `// If there is no loop then second_pointer ` ` ` `// ends at NULL . ` ` ` `while` `(second_pointer != NULL && ` ` ` `second_pointer != first_pointer) { ` ` ` ` ` `// condition after which we will ` ` ` `// update the power and length as ` ` ` `// smallest power of two gives the ` ` ` `// start of cycle. ` ` ` `if` `(length == power) { ` ` ` ` ` `// updating the power. ` ` ` `power *= 2; ` ` ` ` ` `// updating the length ` ` ` `length = 0; ` ` ` ` ` `first_pointer = second_pointer; ` ` ` `} ` ` ` ` ` `second_pointer = second_pointer->next; ` ` ` `++length; ` ` ` `} ` ` ` ` ` `// if it is null then no loop ` ` ` `if` `(second_pointer == NULL) ` ` ` `return` `NULL; ` ` ` ` ` `// Otherwise length stores actual length ` ` ` `// of loop. ` ` ` `// If needed, we can also print length of ` ` ` `// loop. ` ` ` `// printf("Length of loop is %d\n", length); ` ` ` ` ` `// Now set first_pointer to the beginning ` ` ` `// and second_pointer to beginning plus ` ` ` `// cycle length which is length. ` ` ` `first_pointer = second_pointer = head; ` ` ` `while` `(length > 0) { ` ` ` `second_pointer = second_pointer->next; ` ` ` `--length; ` ` ` `} ` ` ` ` ` `// Now move both pointers at same speed so ` ` ` `// that they meet at the beginning of loop. ` ` ` `while` `(second_pointer != first_pointer) { ` ` ` `second_pointer = second_pointer->next; ` ` ` `first_pointer = first_pointer->next; ` ` ` `} ` ` ` ` ` `// If needed, we can also print length of ` ` ` `// loop. ` ` ` `// printf("Length of loop is %d", length); ` ` ` ` ` `return` `first_pointer; ` `} ` ` ` `struct` `Node* newNode(` `int` `key) ` `{ ` ` ` `struct` `Node* temp = ` ` ` `(` `struct` `Node*)` `malloc` `(` `sizeof` `(` `struct` `Node)); ` ` ` `temp->data = key; ` ` ` `temp->next = NULL; ` ` ` `return` `temp; ` `} ` ` ` `// Driver program to test above function ` `int` `main() ` `{ ` ` ` `struct` `Node* head = newNode(50); ` ` ` `head->next = newNode(20); ` ` ` `head->next->next = newNode(15); ` ` ` `head->next->next->next = newNode(4); ` ` ` `head->next->next->next->next = newNode(10); ` ` ` ` ` `// Create a loop for testing ` ` ` `head->next->next->next->next->next = ` ` ` `head->next->next; ` ` ` ` ` `Node *res = detectCycle(head); ` ` ` `if` `(res == NULL) ` ` ` `printf` `(` `"No loop"` `); ` ` ` `else` ` ` `printf` `(` `"Loop is present at %d"` `, res->data); ` ` ` `return` `0; ` `} ` |

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## Python3

`# Python program to implement ` `# Brent's cycle detection ` `# algorithm to detect cycle ` `# in a linked list. ` ` ` `# Node class ` `class` `Node: ` ` ` ` ` `# Constructor to initialize ` ` ` `# the node object ` ` ` `def` `__init__(` `self` `, data): ` ` ` `self` `.data ` `=` `data ` ` ` `self` `.` `next` `=` `None` ` ` `class` `LinkedList: ` ` ` ` ` `# Function to initialize head ` ` ` `def` `__init__(` `self` `): ` ` ` `self` `.head ` `=` `None` ` ` ` ` `# Function to insert a new Node ` ` ` `# at the beginning ` ` ` `def` `push(` `self` `, new_data): ` ` ` `new_node ` `=` `Node(new_data) ` ` ` `new_node.` `next` `=` `self` `.head ` ` ` `self` `.head ` `=` `new_node ` ` ` ` ` `# Utility function to prit ` ` ` `# the linked LinkedList ` ` ` `def` `printList(` `self` `): ` ` ` `temp ` `=` `self` `.head ` ` ` `while` `(temp): ` ` ` `print` `(temp.data,end` `=` `" "` `) ` ` ` `temp ` `=` `temp.` `next` ` ` ` ` ` ` `def` `detectCycle(` `self` `): ` ` ` `# if head is null ` ` ` `# then no loop ` ` ` `temp` `=` `self` `.head ` ` ` ` ` `if` `not` `(temp): ` ` ` `return` `False` ` ` `first_p` `=` `temp ` ` ` `second_p` `=` `temp.` `next` ` ` `power ` `=` `1` ` ` `length ` `=` `1` ` ` ` ` `# This loop runs till we ` ` ` `# find the loop. If there ` ` ` `# is no loop then second ` ` ` `# pointer ends at NULL ` ` ` `while` `(second_p ` `and` `second_p!` `=` `first_p): ` ` ` ` ` `# condition after which ` ` ` `# we will update the power ` ` ` `# and length as smallest ` ` ` `# power of two gives ` ` ` `# the start of cycle. ` ` ` `if` `(length ` `=` `=` `power): ` ` ` ` ` `# updating the power. ` ` ` `power ` `*` `=` `2` ` ` ` ` `# updating the length ` ` ` `length ` `=` `0` ` ` ` ` `first_p ` `=` `second_p ` ` ` ` ` `second_p ` `=` `second_p.` `next` ` ` `length` `=` `length` `+` `1` ` ` `# if it is null then no loop ` ` ` `if` `not` `(second_p) : ` ` ` `return` ` ` ` ` `# Otherwise length stores ` ` ` `# actual length of loop. ` ` ` `# If needed, we can also ` ` ` `# print length of loop. ` ` ` `# print("Length of loop is ") ` ` ` `# print (length) ` ` ` ` ` `# Now set first_pointer ` ` ` `# to the beginning and ` ` ` `# second_pointer to ` ` ` `# beginning plus cycle ` ` ` `# length which is length. ` ` ` `first_p ` `=` `second_p ` `=` `self` `.head ` ` ` `while` `(length > ` `0` `): ` ` ` `second_p ` `=` `second_p.` `next` ` ` `length` `=` `length` `-` `1` ` ` ` ` `# Now move both pointers ` ` ` `# at same speed so that ` ` ` `# they meet at the ` ` ` `# beginning of loop. ` ` ` `while` `(second_p!` `=` `first_p) : ` ` ` `second_p ` `=` `second_p.` `next` ` ` `first_p ` `=` `first_p.` `next` ` ` ` ` `return` `first_p ` ` ` `# Driver program for testing ` `llist ` `=` `LinkedList() ` `llist.push(` `50` `) ` `llist.push(` `20` `) ` `llist.push(` `15` `) ` `llist.push(` `4` `) ` `llist.push(` `10` `) ` ` ` `# Create a loop for testing ` `llist.head.` `next` `.` `next` `.` `next` `.` `next` `.` `next` `=` `llist.head.` `next` `.` `next` `; ` `res` `=` `llist.detectCycle() ` `if` `( res.data): ` ` ` `print` `(` `"loop found at "` `,end` `=` `' '` `) ` ` ` `print` `(res.data) ` `else` `: ` ` ` `print` `(` `"No Loop "` `) ` ` ` `# This code is contributed by Gitanjali ` |

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Output:

Loop is present at 15

** Time Complexity:** O(m + n) where

**m**is the smallest index of the sequence which is the beginning of a cycle, and

**n**is the cycle’s length.

**–**

*Auxiliary Space :***O(1)**auxiliary

**References :**

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cycle_detection#Brent’s_algorithm

github

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