LeetCode: Combination Sum


Challenge Description

Given a set of candidate numbers (candidates) (without duplicates) and a target number (target), find all unique combinations in candidates where the candidate numbers sums to target.

The same repeated number may be chosen from candidates unlimited number of times.

Note: All numbers (including target) will be positive integers. The solution set must not contain duplicate combinations.

Example 1:

Input: candidates = [2,3,6,7], target = 7,
A solution set is:

Approach with Depth-First-Search (DFS)

This could be solved with depth-first search algorithms.

But we need to do a optimization for reduce the search space. After sorting the vector, when we enumerate each element in vector, if (cur_value > target) is true, we could just break out the loop.

class Solution {
  vector<vector<int> > ans;

  void dfs(vector<int>& candidates, vector<int> path, int start, int target) {
    if(target == 0){
    for(int k=start; k<candidates.size(); k++) {
      int cur = candidates[k];
      if(cur > target) break;

      int remain = target - cur;
      dfs(candidates, path, k, remain);

  vector<vector<int> > combinationSum(vector<int>& candidates, int target) {
    sort(candidates.begin(), candidates.end());
    vector<int> path;
    dfs(candidates, path, 0, target);
    return ans;

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