Dr. Ehoneah Obed
Dr. Ehoneah Obed

Dr. Ehoneah Obed

Write a script that compiles a C file and creates an executable named myApp

Write a script that compiles a C file and creates an executable named myApp

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Dr. Ehoneah Obed
·Jun 4, 2022·

2 min read

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Table of contents

  • How to compile a C program using the gcc compiler

The question above doesn't expect you to write a C program but rather a bash script that will be used for compiling various C programs.

This means you will need to know how to write bash scripts to be able to answer this question. If you don't know what a bash script is or how to write one, then check out my previous post on it.

How to write a script that performs certain commands in Linux

There are multiple ways to compile a C program into an executable file. One of the most common ways is:

  • using the gcc compiler

How to compile a C program using the gcc compiler

If you are using a Linux distro like ubuntu then you are likely to have the gcc compiler installed on it. Otherwise you can run the command below to install it.

sudo apt-get install build-essential

Once installed, you now have access to the gcc command.

To compile a C program with the gcc command, you need to pass the file containing your source code as an attribute to the command.

Let's assume that we have a file called app.c containing the source code of our C program, the gcc command will be:

gcc app.c

When the above command is run, all the four stages of the C program compilation will be completed and a final output file will be returned.

NB: The 4 stages of the compilation process are:

  1. Preprocessing
  2. Actual Compilation
  3. Assembly
  4. Linking

Hence, the gcc command above takes your source code through all these 4 stages and by default gives you an executable file with the name a.out.

What if you want the executable file to have a specific name?

You can add the option-o to the gcc command and give the name that you want for the execution file as an attribute.

gcc app.c -o myApp

The command above means that your source code app.c should be compiled into an executable file called myApp.

 
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