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Ordering samples with SelectVariants and VariantsToTable

Hello GATK team,

Given a sample.txt file to be used with -sf flag, and sample names given on each line, is there an option in SelectVariants and/or VariantsToTable that allows output to be ordered as specified?

sample.txt file:

desired sample fields in .vcf file:
Ind1 Ind4 Ind2 Ind3

This can be done with command line tools, but thought I would ask here first. Thanks!

Issue · Github
by Sheila

Issue Number
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Best Answer


  • SheilaSheila Broad InstituteMember, Broadie admin


    Unfortunately, it seems like the output is in numerical order and there is no option to override that. Let me see if I can put in a feature request.


  • SheilaSheila Broad InstituteMember, Broadie admin


    This feature has been turned down by the developers. They would prefer to have a universally consistent rule for ordering. You can either write scripts that are not order-sensitive, or convert to a specific order using some other solution. It seems like you already know how to do that, so it should not be a problem.


  • o_Oo_O Member

    Thank you, Sheila. Is there an option to keep the columns as is (i.e., not re-ordered) in my vcf when using VariantsToTable? Thanks!

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