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What is a compiler? How source code becomes machine code

January 20, 2023

A compiler is a computer program that translates from one format to another, most often from a high-level computer language to byte code and machine code. Compilers come in a number of variations, which we will explore in this article.

Compilers, transpilers, interpreters, and JIT compilers

Compilers often translate source code for a high-level language, such as C++, to object code for the current computer architecture, such as Intel x64. The object modules produced from multiple high-level language files are then linked into an executable file.

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