### Strings with zero-padded values and other string formatting examples in Python

Assume you want to convert a number to a string but you want to pad the smaller numbers with zeros so that all strings have the same length (for example, '0009', '0069' and '0132'). There are many ways to do this but in Python, there is a very elegant way using string formatting:

``` anumber = 9 thestr = "%04d" % (anumber) print thestr 0009 anumber = 69 thestr = "%04d" % (anumber) print thestr 0069 anumber = 132 thestr = "%04d" % (anumber) print thestr 0132 anumber = 12541 thestr = "%04d" % (anumber) print thestr 12541 ```

Since the `format()` function is preferred (since Python 2.6 I think), you might want to use it instead (see here):

``` anumber = 69 thestr = "{0:0>4}".format(anumber) print thestr 0069 thestr = "{0:0<4}".format(anumber) print thestr 6900 thestr = "{0:0<8}".format(anumber) print thestr 69000000 thestr = "{0:0^8}".format(anumber) print thestr 00069000 thestr = "{0:-^8}".format(anumber) print thestr ---69--- ```