Linkers and Loaders
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computer science crazy
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23-10-2009, 04:48 PM

.ppt   Linkers and Loaders.ppt (Size: 473.5 KB / Downloads: 104)
Linking is the process of combining various pieces of code and data together to form a single executable that can be loaded in memory. Linking can be done at compile time, at load time (by loaders) and also at run time (by application programs). In this seminar and presentation, I will explain about ELF (Executable and Linking Format) binary format and I will explain in detail how linking and loading is done in Linux Operating System. I will also explain in brief how this is done in Windows
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03-10-2012, 11:39 AM

Linker & Loader

.pptx   Loader_1.pptx (Size: 118.09 KB / Downloads: 14)


System program that prepares Object Program for Execution by loading them into Main Memory



Single Program may include references between different segments
May refer to external program data and Functions as well
Important job of Loader is to Resolve these inter segment/program references(link them)
Then generate single continuous piece of Code that can be directly Executed


As per need OS may move(i.e. Relocate) one or more segments of program from one area of memory to another
When program get relocated Instructions referring to code or data in the relocated segments must also be changed (Address Sensitive Instructions)
Loader has to adjust addresses of all such address sensitive Instructions when OS relocates one or more program segments


System program that resolves all address references within each object module (several object module) and combines them to produce Executable(.exe) file
Linker performs linking and relocation function for Loader


Linking Object Files:

Links multiple relocatable object files used by program and generates single .exe file which can be loaded and executed by Loader

Resolving External References:

While linking those object files Linker resolves inter segment/program references to generate single continuous executable Files

Relocate Symbol:

Linker relocates symbols from their relative locations in object files to new absolute positions in the executable file

Dynamic Linking Loader:

In this Loading and Linking are postponed until Execution time if external references found
Assembler produces Text, binding/relocation info From Source File
Loader loads only in main program
When main program should execute transfer Instruction to external address or reference external variable Loader is called
Only then segment containing external reference is loaded

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