We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

What is Object Code?

By Derek Schauland
Updated: May 16, 2024

Programming languages such as C and Java are high level languages that require the source code entered by the programmer to be compiled. Once the compiler has processed the code, it produces a set of object code that can be passed to other programs or run on a computer system.

When creating source code in an object oriented language such as C++, the programmer can use instances of objects to make the source code easier to follow. Once the code is compiled, the resulting object code will be difficult for a human to read, but can be processed very efficiently by a computer. The two types of objects are quite different, but for their respective uses — one read by programmers the other read by computers — they serve a similar purpose.

Object code can also keep the source code of a particular application protected and remove the requirement to include the source with the purchased product. One example of object code that consumers pay for would be Microsoft Office. The object code is written to a CD or DVD and packaged for sale, but the source code used to compile the applications into their working state is kept by Microsoft and not shared with the general public. This helps protect intellectual property for Microsoft and also eliminates the need for the individual to purchase the software to compile it prior to installation.

A compiler is a piece of software that transforms the entered source code into a machine language readable object which is optimized for reading by a computer. Separating the original source code from the installed code can also provide benefit to developers in testing, allowing the source code to continually change and be compiled to be available for later installations. An example of this might be to compare an application's nightly build to the stable packaged object code. One needs compiling and is changed nightly, the other has been tested and is made available when the majority of the kinks have been worked out.

Some applications or even operating systems such as Linux can be compiled by the users once downloaded, or they can be downloaded and installed from pre-compiled object code. Many of these applications are open source and the development communities that create and support them encourage those using them to assist in modifying their source code.

There are more and more open source applications and developers around the Internet who would encourage the use of nightly builds, however the packaged object code of both open source and payware applications can be much more user friendly.

EasyTechJunkie is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
EasyTechJunkie, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

EasyTechJunkie, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.