We have discussed Singly and Circular Linked List in the following post:

Singly Linked List

Circular Linked List

**Why Circular?** In a singly linked list, for accessing any node of linked list, we start traversing from the first node. If we are at any node in the middle of the list, then it is not possible to access nodes that precede the given node. This problem can be solved by slightly altering the structure of singly linked list. In a singly linked list, next part (pointer to next node) is NULL, if we utilize this link to point to the first node then we can reach preceding nodes. Refer this for more advantages of circular linked lists.

The structure thus formed is circular singly linked list look like this:

In this post, implementation and insertion of a node in a Circular Linked List using singly linked list are explained.

**Implementation**

To implement a circular singly linked list, we take an external pointer that points to the last node of the list. If we have a pointer last pointing to the last node, then last -> next will point to the first node.

The ponter *last* points to node Z and last -> next points to node P.

*Why have we taken a pointer that points to the last node instead of first node ?*

For insertion of node in the beginning we need traverse the whole list. Also, for insertion and the end, the whole list has to be traversed. If instead of *start* pointer we take a pointer to the last node then in both the cases there won’t be any need to traverse the whole list. So insertion in the begging or at the end takes constant time irrespective of the length of the list.

**Insertion**

A node can be added in three ways:

- Insertion in an empty list
- Insertion at the beginning of the list
- Insertion at the end of the list
- Insertion in between the nodes

**Insertion in an empty List**

Initially when the list is empty,

*last*pointer will be NULL.

After inserting a node T,

After insertion, T is the last node so pointer

*last*points to node T. And Node T is first and last node, so T is pointing to itself.

Function to insert node in an empty List,

struct Node *addToEmpty(struct Node *last, int data) { // This function is only for empty list if (last != NULL) return last; // Creating a node dynamically. struct Node *last = (struct Node*)malloc(sizeof(struct Node)); // Assigning the data. last -> data = data; // Note : list was empty. We link single node // to itself. last -> next = last; return last; }

**Insertion at the beginning of the list**

To Insert a node at the beginning of the list, follow these step:

1. Create a node, say T.

2. Make T -> next = last -> next.

3. last -> next = T.

After insertion,

Function to insert node in the beginning of the List,

struct Node *addBegin(struct Node *last, int data) { if (last == NULL) return addToEmpty(last, data); // Creating a node dynamically. struct Node *temp = (struct Node *)malloc(sizeof(struct Node)); // Assigning the data. temp -> data = data; // Adjusting the links. temp -> next = last -> next; last -> next = temp; return last; }

**Insertion at the end of the list**

To Insert a node at the end of the list, follow these step:

1. Create a node, say T.

2. Make T -> next = last -> next;

3. last -> next = T.

4. last = T.

After insertion,

Function to insert node in the end of the List,

struct Node *addEnd(struct Node *last, int data) { if (last == NULL) return addToEmpty(last, data); // Creating a node dynamically. struct Node *temp = (struct Node *)malloc(sizeof(struct Node)); // Assigning the data. temp -> data = data; // Adjusting the links. temp -> next = last -> next; last -> next = temp; last = temp; return last; }

**Insertion in between the nodes**

To Insert a node at the end of the list, follow these step:

1. Create a node, say T.

2. Search the node after which T need to be insert, say that node be P.

3. Make T -> next = P -> next;

4. P -> next = T.

Suppose 12 need to be insert after node having value 10,

After searching and insertion,

Function to insert node in the end of the List,

struct Node *addAfter(struct Node *last, int data, int item) { if (last == NULL) return NULL; struct Node *temp, *p; p = last -> next; // Searching the item. do { if (p ->data == item) { // Creating a node dynamically. temp = (struct Node *)malloc(sizeof(struct Node)); // Assigning the data. temp -> data = data; // Adjusting the links. temp -> next = p -> next; // Adding newly allocated node after p. p -> next = temp; // Checking for the last node. if (p == last) last = temp; return last; } p = p -> next; } while (p != last -> next); cout << item << " not present in the list." << endl; return last; }

Following is a complete program that uses all of the above methods to create a circular singly linked list.

#include<bits/stdc++.h> using namespace std; struct Node { int data; struct Node *next; }; struct Node *addToEmpty(struct Node *last, int data) { // This function is only for empty list if (last != NULL) return last; // Creating a node dynamically. struct Node *temp = (struct Node*)malloc(sizeof(struct Node)); // Assigning the data. temp -> data = data; last = temp; // Creating the link. last -> next = last; return last; } struct Node *addBegin(struct Node *last, int data) { if (last == NULL) return addToEmpty(last, data); struct Node *temp = (struct Node *)malloc(sizeof(struct Node)); temp -> data = data; temp -> next = last -> next; last -> next = temp; return last; } struct Node *addEnd(struct Node *last, int data) { if (last == NULL) return addToEmpty(last, data); struct Node *temp = (struct Node *)malloc(sizeof(struct Node)); temp -> data = data; temp -> next = last -> next; last -> next = temp; last = temp; return last; } struct Node *addAfter(struct Node *last, int data, int item) { if (last == NULL) return NULL; struct Node *temp, *p; p = last -> next; do { if (p ->data == item) { temp = (struct Node *)malloc(sizeof(struct Node)); temp -> data = data; temp -> next = p -> next; p -> next = temp; if (p == last) last = temp; return last; } p = p -> next; } while(p != last -> next); cout << item << " not present in the list." << endl; return last; } void traverse(struct Node *last) { struct Node *p; // If list is empty, return. if (last == NULL) { cout << "List is empty." << endl; return; } // Pointing to first Node of the list. p = last -> next; // Traversing the list. do { cout << p -> data << " "; p = p -> next; } while(p != last->next); } // Driven Program int main() { struct Node *last = NULL; last = addToEmpty(last, 6); last = addBegin(last, 4); last = addBegin(last, 2); last = addEnd(last, 8); last = addEnd(last, 12); last = addAfter(last, 10, 8); traverse(last); return 0; }

Output:

2 4 6 8 10 12

This article is contributed by **Anuj Chauhan**. If you like GeeksforGeeks and would like to contribute, you can also write an article using contribute.geeksforgeeks.org or mail your article to contribute@geeksforgeeks.org. See your article appearing on the GeeksforGeeks main page and help other Geeks.

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