List changes unexpectedly after assignment How do I clone or copy it to prevent this

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While using new_list = my_list, any modifications to new_list changes my_list everytime. Why is this, and how can I clone or copy the list to prevent it?
Dec 7, 2020 in Python by Roshni
• 10,520 points
314 views

1 answer to this question.

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With new_list = my_list, you don't actually have two lists. The assignment just copies the reference to the list, not the actual list, so both new_list and my_list refer to the same list after the assignment.

To actually copy the list, you have various possibilities:

  • You can use the built-in list.copy() method (available since Python 3.3):

    new_list = old_list.copy()
    
  • You can slice it:

    new_list = old_list[:]
answered Dec 7, 2020 by Gitika
• 65,890 points

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