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

Play this article

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.

Did you find this article valuable?

Support Dr. Ehoneah Obed by becoming a sponsor. Any amount is appreciated!