How to Exchange Row Names of Data Frame in R (Example Code)

In this tutorial, I’ll show how to modify the row names of a data frame in the R programming language.

Creating Example Data

data(iris)                                    # Loading iris data set
head(iris)
#   Sepal.Length Sepal.Width Petal.Length Petal.Width Species
# 1          5.1         3.5          1.4         0.2  setosa
# 2          4.9         3.0          1.4         0.2  setosa
# 3          4.7         3.2          1.3         0.2  setosa
# 4          4.6         3.1          1.5         0.2  setosa
# 5          5.0         3.6          1.4         0.2  setosa
# 6          5.4         3.9          1.7         0.4  setosa
iris_names <- paste0("row_", 1:nrow(iris))    # Specify vector of new row names
iris_names                                    # Show new row names in RStudio console
# "row_1"   "row_2"   "row_3"   "row_4"   "row_5"   "row_6" ...

Example: Exchanging Row Names of Data Frame by Values in Vector

rownames(iris) <- iris_names                  # Using rownames() function
head(iris)                                    # Show head of updated iris data
#       Sepal.Length Sepal.Width Petal.Length Petal.Width Species
# row_1          5.1         3.5          1.4         0.2  setosa
# row_2          4.9         3.0          1.4         0.2  setosa
# row_3          4.7         3.2          1.3         0.2  setosa
# row_4          4.6         3.1          1.5         0.2  setosa
# row_5          5.0         3.6          1.4         0.2  setosa
# row_6          5.4         3.9          1.7         0.4  setosa

Related Tutorials

Have a look at the following R programming language tutorials. They illustrate topics such as extracting data, groups, and naming data:

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