Thursday, April 21, 2011

Java primary data types : Integers

The integer types are for numbers without fractional parts. Negative values are allowed.
  • int      4 bytes
  • Short  2 bytes
  • Long   8 bytes
  • Byte   1 byte

In most situations, the int type is the most practical. If you want to represent the number of inhabitants of our planet, you'll need to resort to a long. The byte and short types are mainly intended for specialized applications, such as low-level file handling, or for large arrays when storage space is at a premium.

Under Java, the ranges of the integer types do not depend on the machine on which you will be running the Java code. This alleviates a major pain for the programmer who wants to move software from one platform to another, or even between operating systems on the same platform. In contrast, C and C++ programs use the most efficient integer type for each processor. As a result, a C program that runs well on a 32-bit processor may exhibit integer overflow on a 16-bit system. Because Java programs must run with the same results on all machines, the ranges for the various types are fixed.

Long integer numbers have a suffix L (for example, 4000000000L). Hexadecimal numbers have a prefix 0x (for example, 0xCAFE). Octal numbers have a prefix 0. For example, 010 is 8. Naturally, this can be confusing, and we recommend against the use of octal constants.

Cpp vs Java on integers

Note that Java does not have any unsigned types.

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