How does Python manage int and long?


Does anybody know how Python manage internally int and long types?

  • Does it choose the right type dynamically?
  • What is the limit for an int?
  • I am using Python 2.6, Is is different with previous versions?

How should I understand the code below?

>>> print type(65535)
<type 'int'>
>>> print type(65536*65536)
<type 'long'>


>>> print type(0x7fffffff)
<type 'int'>
>>> print type(0x80000000)
<type 'long'>
10/25/2012 9:48:36 AM

Accepted Answer

int and long were "unified" a few versions back. Before that it was possible to overflow an int through math ops.

3.x has further advanced this by eliminating long altogether and only having int.

  • Python 2: sys.maxint contains the maximum value a Python int can hold.
    • On a 64-bit Python 2.7, the size is 24 bytes. Check with sys.getsizeof().
  • Python 3: sys.maxsize contains the maximum size in bytes a Python int can be.
    • This will be gigabytes in 32 bits, and exabytes in 64 bits.
    • Such a large int would have a value similar to 8 to the power of sys.maxsize.
7/8/2019 3:34:50 AM

This PEP should help.

Bottom line is that you really shouldn't have to worry about it in python versions > 2.4

Licensed under: CC-BY-SA with attribution
Not affiliated with: Stack Overflow