Difference Between Compiler Interpreter and Assembler

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Difference Between Compiler Interpreter and Assembler

Is a low-level programming language in which there is a dependence on the machine code instructions. An assembler translates human-readable assembly language into machine code. The inverse program that converts machine code to assembly language is called a disassembler. High-level languages, like C, C++, JAVA, etc., are very near to English. However, it must be translated into machine language before execution.

  • Interpreters are used to simplify the implementation of computer programming language constructs and make it easier for programs to run.
  • Thus the scanning time is lower but the overall execution time is higher.
  • She has more than 15 years of professional experience as a developer and has a Udemy course on memory leaks and web performance.
  • An interpreter translates the code line-by-line when the program is running.
  • Compilers can contain interpreters for optimization reasons like faster performance and smaller memory footprint.
  • Python, for example, can be executed as either a compiled program or as an interpreted language in interactive mode.

If there are any syntactic or semantic error, the compiler will indicate them. It is not possible to execute the program without fixing those errors. In this approach, each sentence needs to be parsed just once. As an advantage over bytecode, the AST keeps the global program structure and relations between statements , and when compressed provides a more compact representation. Thus, using AST has been proposed as a better intermediate format for just-in-time compilers than bytecode.

Interpreter Vs Compiler

However, in an efficient interpreter, much of the translation work is factored out and done only the first time a program, module, function, or even statement, is run, thus quite akin to how a compiler works. However, a compiled program still runs much faster, under most circumstances, in part because compilers are designed to optimize code, and may be given ample time for this. This is especially true for simpler high-level languages without dynamic data structures, checks, or type checking. Difference between Compiler and Interpreter is that in the compiler, the codes run on the compiler are comparatively faster whereas in Interpreter the codes run on the interpreter are comparatively slower.

what is compiler and interpreter

Meanwhile, Python translates code immediately with minimal compilation time. On average, however, it is expected that JIT-ed code outperforms Interpreted code. Both Compiler and Interpreter do the same job which is converting high-level programming language to machine code. However, a compiler will convert the code into machine code before the program run. Interpreter covers code into machine code when the program is run.

Advantages of Interpreter

A computer can only understand binaries but implement problems. Expressing solutions in a machine language are difficult to keep track of, so a human-oriented form of language is represented as our way of communicating with the computer. Since different processors have different architectural layouts e.g. AMD, Intel, ARM, Qualcomm, and others, compiled binaries have to be portable. To attain this, the compiler generates an object code that represents an intermediary code which is converted to machine code at runtime.

Object code is a term used to describe this type of output (which is not related to object-oriented programming). Because the output machine code is fully made up of binary bits , it can be read and executed by the target computers’ processors. A compiler might, for example, generate machine code for the Linux x64 or Linux ARM 64-bit platforms. The compiler is a computer program that reads a program written in a high-level language and converts it to machine code or a lower-level language.

Java Compiler and Interpreter

Also, it allows the system to perform better analysis during runtime. A compiler is a program that changes the source code of a programming language into executable computer code. The CPU only understands the program written in 0’s and 1’s and converts the executable program into machine code that is recognized by computers. Source code, without a compiler, is considered an ineffective set of instructions.

An assembler or compiler, on the other hand, translates high-level source code into native code that the operating system can directly execute (e.g. by creating a .exe program). An interpreter is a computer programme that uses one of the numerous high-level programming languages to directly execute programme instructions. Files that contain Java bytecode, a highly optimized set of instructions, then a bytecode interpreter executes the bytecode, and later the JIT compiler translates the bytecode to machine code. On compilation of source code, the machine code generated for different processors like Intel, AMD, and ARM is different. To make code portable, the source code is first converted to Object Code.


This is because the process of translating code at run time adds to the overhead, and can cause the program to be slower overall. To sum up, the compilers and the interpreters are like an oven and induction stove. Its functioning is almost the same; To convert a programming language into a machine https://globalcloudteam.com/ language. Their usage depends on the language being used and the purpose. When the process is taken into account, the interpreter outperforms the compiler. However, once a programme is compiled, the runtime or execution of a compiled programme is faster than that of an interpreted programme.

what is compiler and interpreter

Interpreters take the next line of code only when the previous one has compiled. Interpreters walking the abstract syntax tree are slower than those generating bytecode. Interpreted programs can run on only those computers which have the same interpreter. The interpreter converts the source code line-by-line during RUN Time. The executable result is some form of machine-specific binary code. An interpreter translates the entire source code line by line.

Benefits of using Interpreters

Example data type definitions for the latter, and a toy interpreter for syntax trees obtained from C expressions are shown in the box. Compiled languages need a “build” step – they need to be manually compiled first. You need to “rebuild” the program every time you need to make a change. In our hummus example, the entire translation is written before it gets to you. If the original author decides that he wants to use a different kind of olive oil, the entire recipe would need to be translated again and resent to you. The interpreter is really useful for debugging, although it is slow overall.

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In contrast, Julia’s JIT compiler optimizes its generated machine code as one can specify type information in the language. If we compare Python with Julia we can notice the significant difference on average and start-up execution of the code. Calling up a JIT compiler would require more time to execute at first since the code has to be compiled and optimized for generating efficient machine code, which incurs an overhead.

Comparison Table: Compiler vs Interpreter vs Assembler:

Interpreters are used to simplify the implementation of computer programming language constructs and make it easier for programs to run. An interpreter is responsible for converting spoken information from one source language to another. This what is compiler occurs frequently in real-time circumstances such as conferences and meetings, medical visits, court procedures, and live television coverage. An interpreter’s primary responsibility is to translate talks from one source language to another.

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