Executables (page to complete)

Making a binary executable file from FreeBASIC source files.

A binary file is simply one in a binary (i.e. non-text) format.
The binary format means that the file's contents should not be transformed for platform-specific reasons (e.g. replacing newlines from \n to \r\n).

Binary files are not necessarily executable, for example a library compiled to '*.dll' or '*.a' form is a binary but not an executable.

Executable files are not necessarily binary, for example a script in text form can be made executable on Operating Systems.

An executable file is one which can be executed (it can be run on the command-line by writing the name of the file itself as the command).
On Windows, the file's extension must be one of a fixed set of executable file extensions, including '*.exe'.
On Unix systems, the file's "executable" flag must also be set.

Using 'fbc' command
FreeBASIC consists of fbc (the command line compiler/linker), the runtime libraries, and FreeBASIC header files for third-party libraries.
In order to produce executables, fbc uses the GNU binutils (assembler, linker). When compiling for architectures other than 32bit x86, fbc depends on gcc to generate assembly.

FreeBASIC provides the FreeBASIC compiler/linker program (fbc or fbc.exe), as well as the tools and libraries it uses.
fbc is a command line program that takes FreeBASIC source/include files ('*.bas'/'*.bi') and object/library files ('*.o'/'*.a'), then compiles them into executables.

fbc is typically invoked by Integrated Development Environments (IDEs) or text editors, from a terminal or command prompt, or through build-systems such as makefiles.
fbc itself is not a graphical code editor or IDE!

By default, FreeBASIC programs are linked against various system and/or support libraries, depending on the platform.
Those include the DJGPP libraries used by FreeBASIC for DOS and the MinGW/GCC libraries used by FreeBASIC for Windows.


See also:
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