Large exe files for small amounts of code problem

This is a discussion on Large exe files for small amounts of code problem within the C++ Programming forums, part of the General Programming Boards category; I am using DevC++ (mingw32 port of gcc I believe, version 3.2) and when ever I compile a program using ...

  1. #1
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    Large exe files for small amounts of code problem

    I am using DevC++ (mingw32 port of gcc I believe, version 3.2) and when ever I compile a program using the iostream library the exe is usally around 440Kb, while using stdio it is only like 26Kb. Is this normal, if not can anyone tell me the setting on how change this? Thank you in advance for your help.

    Code:
    #include <iostream>
    using namespace std;
    
    int main()
    {
    cout <<"When this program is compiled the exe is around 440KB.";
    return 0;
    }
    Code:
    #include <stdio.h>
    
    int main()
    {
    printf("When this program is compiled the exe is around 26KB.");
    return 0;
    }

  2. #2
    Magically delicious LuckY's Avatar
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    Wow that seems to be a poor compiler based on this example as it compiled for me with Borland to 112kb.

    Anyhow, the massive size of the executable is not a result of including iostream, rather it is from calling cout. There is a lot more overhead involved in all of the classes and templates and the overall hierarchy involved in the standard classes such as iostream, whereas calling printf() requires a simple function call.

  3. #3
    and the hat of wrongness Salem's Avatar
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    > Is this normal, if not can anyone tell me the setting on how change this?
    First off, the C++ standard library is much more capable than the C standard library, so you're going to get more stuff linked into your executable as a baseline. A developing C++ program should grow more slowly than the same C program, since more of the basic stuff is already present.

    Second, did you compile with debug? Debug information is stored in the executable, and C++ debug is more verbose than 'equivalent' C debug.
    You could see if you have the 'strip' utility (usually part of most gcc based distributions)
    eg
    strip prog.exe

    This removes all debug and leaves you with just the actual code. Then compare sizes.
    If you dance barefoot on the broken glass of undefined behaviour, you've got to expect the occasional cut.
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    Thankyou for the help, now the programs are half their original size.

  5. #5
    Registered User Frobozz's Avatar
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    And if you want it even smaller... try UPX.

    I compressed a "strip"ed simple hello world down to 72k.

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