In computer science, Prim’s algorithm is a greedy algorithm that finds a minimum spanning tree for a weighted undirected graph. This means it finds a subset of the edges that forms a tree that includes every vertex, where the total weight of all the edges in the tree is minimized. The algorithm operates by building this tree one vertex at a time, from an arbitrary starting vertex, at each step adding the cheapest possible connection from the tree to another vertex.
Use Prim’s algorithm when you have a graph with lots of edges.For a graph with V vertices E edges, Kruskal’s algorithm runs in O(E log V) time and Prim’s algorithm can run in O(E + V log V) amortized time, if you use a Fibonacci Heap.
Prim’s algorithm is significantly faster in the limit when you’ve got a really dense graph with many more edges than vertices. Kruskal performs better in typical situations (sparse graphs) because it uses simpler data structures.
The algorithm was developed in 1930 by Czech mathematician Vojtěch Jarník and later rediscovered and republished by computer scientists Robert C. Prim in 1957 and Edsger W. Dijkstra in 1959