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Saloni Goyal
Saloni Goyal

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How Text becomes Executable?

The three times that are important in the lifetime of a C++ program are -

a) Compile time
b) Link Time
c) Runtime

Compile Time

  • C++ is a compiled language
  • A compiler takes source code you can read and write and transforms it into a different format (the machine language)
  • The compiler may give error messages
  • The compiled output is generally called an object file.


Link Time

  • Any program larger than a demo is made of several source files.
  • Each source file is compiled, then the object files are linked together to create an executable file (exe).
  • In some projects, you would create a library file instead of an exe, but that is for later.
  • The linker also gives error messages if it can't link the object files.


  • Finally you run the application
  • There maybe runtime messages or dialogs from the operating system, or that you wrote yourself

Please leave out comments with anything you don't understand or would like for me to improve upon.

Thanks for reading!

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