Iterating through a Collection, avoiding ConcurrentModificationException when removing in loop

0 votes

We all know you can't do this:

for (Object i : l) {
    if (condition(i)) {
        l.remove(i);
    }
}

ConcurrentModificationException etc... this apparently works sometimes, but not always. Here's some specific code:

public static void main(String[] args) {
    Collection<Integer> l = new ArrayList<Integer>();

    for (int i=0; i < 10; ++i) {
        l.add(new Integer(4));
        l.add(new Integer(5));
        l.add(new Integer(6));
    }

    for (Integer i : l) {
        if (i.intValue() == 5) {
            l.remove(i);
        }
    }

    System.out.println(l);
}

This, of course, results in:

Exception in thread "main" java.util.ConcurrentModificationException

... even though multiple threads aren't doing it... Anyway.

What's the best solution to this problem? How can I remove an item from the collection in a loop without throwing this exception?

I'm also using an arbitrary Collection here, not necessarily an ArrayList, so you can't rely on get.

Jul 3, 2018 in Java by developer_1
• 3,280 points
76 views

1 answer to this question.

0 votes

You can either use the iterator directly like you mentioned, or else keep a second collection and add each item you want to remove to the new collection, then removeAll at the end. This allows you to keep using the type-safety of the for-each loop at the cost of increased memory use and cpu time (shouldn't be a huge problem unless you have really, really big lists or a really old computer)

public static void main(String[] args)
{
    Collection<Integer> l = new ArrayList<Integer>();
    Collection<Integer> itemsToRemove = new ArrayList<Integer>();
    for (int i=0; i < 10; ++i) {
    l.add(new Integer(4));
    l.add(new Integer(5));
    l.add(new Integer(6));
    }
    for (Integer i : l)
    {
        if (i.intValue() == 5)
            itemsToRemove.add(i);
    }

    l.removeAll(itemsToRemove);
    System.out.println(l);
}
answered Jul 3, 2018 by Rishabh
• 3,540 points

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