Let’s Go to the Library

C STATIC LIBRARIES

Any library is designed to hold a large amount of information in a way that is organized and fairly easy to access. Imagine walking into your local library in search of a cookbook. You know you will need to walk to the non-fiction section. A library organized by the Dewey decimal system will have all the cookbooks together filed under the 614’s. This will make your search much more simple rather than checking all the shelves you see. By having an idea of what you’re looking for and where to go you will speed your search and get out the door faster so you can get on your way to preparing a meal from your newly found book. A C static library is similar, in that it is designed to offer ease of access to both the computer and the programmer.

WHY USE LIBRARIES AND HOW DO THEY WORK

To put it simply, libraries make information easier to access. When creating a file, the programmer will enter all information into a main function. This contains an enormous amount of information that could be difficult to locate later. By creating a static library the functions within this main file will be easier to locate within the other information in the file.

HOW TO CREATE THEM

When creating a library the programmer will begin in the header files. Anything added to the executable files when linking the files during the compilation process will be added to the library. When gcc main.c typed in the terminal, any functions that are included in your header file gets added into the executable file, along with your main.c source code after pressing return. If code is marked with <> the operating system will look for header files in the system. If the code is marked with “” the system will search for information in the current directory. Then, 5 steps must be taken to create a library. First, create functions in accordance with the project’s coding needs. Next, compile all of the C files into object files. Then, create a static library with the ar program. After, the library will need to be indexed with the code randlib. Finally, compile the library with gcc using the -L flag and the library name.
HOW TO USE THEM

Once your terms are compiled with gcc use the flag -l with the library name minus the ib characters, -L after the library name telling the linker that the library might be found in the current directory, and the -o flag with the name of the executable. If changes must be made the steps will need to be repeated in their entirety.

Libraries are meant to create a more functional way to access specific codes. It is a tool used to assist the programmer as they create and recreate code. Though it is possible to function without the library it is much easier to maintain the library for future use.