ld - Using LD , the GNU linker


ld [__options__? objfile ...


ld combines a number of object and archive files, relocates their data and ties up symbol references. Usually the last step in compiling a program is to run ld.

ld accepts Linker Command Language files written in a superset of AT 's Link Editor Command Language syntax, to provide explicit and total control over the linking process.

This man page does not describe the command language; see the ld entry in info, or the manual ld: the GNU linker, for full details on the command language and on other aspects of the GNU linker.

This version of ld uses the general purpose BFD libraries to operate on object files. This allows ld to read, combine, and write object files in many different formats---for example, COFF or a.out. Different formats may be linked together to produce any available kind of object file.

Aside from its flexibility, the GNU linker is more helpful than other linkers in providing diagnostic information. Many linkers abandon execution immediately upon encountering an error; whenever possible, ld continues executing, allowing you to identify other errors (or, in some cases, to get an output file in spite of the error).

The GNU linker ld is meant to cover a broad range of situations, and to be as compatible as possible with other linkers. As a result, you have many choices to control its behavior.


The linker supports a plethora of command-line options, but in actual practice few of them are used in any particular context. For instance, a frequent use of ld is to link standard Unix object files on a standard, supported Unix system. On such a system, to link a file


ld -o I

This tells ld to produce a file called output as the result of linking the file /lib/crt0.o with hello.o and the library libc.a, which will come from the standard search directories. (See the discussion of the -l option below.)

Some of the command-line options to ld may be specified at any point in the command line. However, options which refer to files, such as -l or -T, cause the file to be read at the point at which the option appears in the command line, relative to the object files and other file options. Repeating non-file options with a different argument will either have no further effect, or override prior occurrences (those further to the left on the command line) of that option. Options which may be meaningfully specified more than once are noted in the descriptions below.

Non-option arguments are object files or archives which are to be linked together. They may follow, precede, or be mixed in with command-line options, except that an object file argument may not be placed between an option and its argument.

Usually the linker is invoked with at least one object file, but you can specify other forms of binary input files using -l, -R, and the script command language. If no binary input files at all are specified, the linker does not produce any output, and issues the message No input files.

If the linker can not recognize the format of an object file, it will assume that it is a linker script. A script specified in this way augments the main linker script used for the link (either the default linker script or the one specified by using -T). This feature permits the linker to link against a file which appears to be an object or an archive, but actually merely defines some symbol values, or uses INPUT or GROUP to load other objects. Note that specifying a script in this way merely augments the main linker script; use the -T option to replace the default linker script entirely.

For options whose names are a single letter, option arguments must either follow the option letter without intervening whitespace, or be given as separate arguments immediately following the option that requires them.

For options whose names are multiple letters, either one dash or two can precede the option name; for example, -trace-symbol and --trace-symbol are equivalent. Note - there is one exception to this rule. Multiple letter options that start with a lower case 'o' can only be preceeded by two dashes. This is to reduce confusion with the -o option. So for example -omagic sets the output file name to magic whereas --omagic sets the NMAGIC flag on the output.

Arguments to multiple-letter options must either be separated from the option name by an equals sign, or be given as separate arguments immediately following the option that requires them. For example, --trace-symbol foo and --trace-symbol=foo are equivalent. Unique abbreviations of the names of multiple-letter options are accepted.

Note - if the linker is being invoked indirectly, via a compiler driver (eg gcc) then all the linker command line options should be prefixed by -Wl, (or whatever is appropriate for the particular compiler driver) like


gcc -Wl,--startgroup foo.o bar.o -Wl,--endgroup

This is important, because otherwise the compiler driver program may silently drop the linker options, resulting in a bad link.

Here is a table of the generic command line switches accepted by the GNU linker:


This option is supported for HP/UX compatibility. The keyword argument must be one of the strings archive, shared, or default. -aarchive is functionally equivalent to -Bstatic, and the other two keywords are functionally equivalent to -Bdynamic. This option may be used any number of times.



In the current release of ld, this option is useful only for the Intel 960 family of architectures. In that ld configuration, the architecture argument identifies the particular architecture in the 960 family, enabling some safeguards and modifying the archive-library search path.

Future releases of ld may support similar functionality for other architecture families.

-b input-format


ld may be configured to support more than one kind of object file. If your ld is configured this way, you can use the -b option to specify the binary format for input object files that follow this option on the command line. Even when ld is configured to support alternative object formats, you don't usually need to specify this, as ld should be configured to expect as a default input format the most usual format on each machine. input-format is a text string, the name of a particular format supported by the BFD libraries. (You can list the available binary formats with objdump -i.)

You may want to use this option if you are linking files with an unusual binary format. You can also use -b to switch formats explicitly (when linking object files of different formats), by including -b input-format before each group of object files in a particular format.

The default format is taken from the environment variable GNUTARGET.

You can also define the input format from a script, using the command TARGET;

-c MRI-commandfile


For compatibility with linkers produced by MRI , ld accepts script files written in an alternate, restricted command language, described in the MRI Compatible Script Files section of GNU ld documentation. Introduce MRI script files with the option -c; use the -T option to run linker scripts written in the general-purpose ld scripting language. If MRI-cmdfile does not exist, ld looks for it in the directories specified by any -L options.




These three options are equivalent; multiple forms are supported for compatibility with other linkers. They assign space to common symbols even if a relocatable output file is specified (with -r). The script command FORCE_COMMON_ALLOCATION has the same effect.

-e entry


Use entry as the explicit symbol for beginning execution of your program, rather than the default entry point. If there is no symbol named entry, the linker will try to parse entry as a number, and use that as the entry address (the number will be interpreted in base 10; you may use a leading 0x for base 16, or a leading 0 for base 8).



When creating a dynamically linked executable, add all symbols to the dynamic symbol table. The dynamic symbol table is the set of symbols which are visible from dynamic objects at run time.

If you do not use this option, the dynamic symbol table will normally contain only those symbols which are referenced by some dynamic object mentioned in the link.

If you use dlopen to load a dynamic object which needs to refer back to the symbols defined by the program, rather than some other dynamic object, then you will probably need to use this option when linking the program itself.

You can also use the version script to control what symbols should be added to the dynamic symbol table if the output format supports it. See the description of --version-script in @ref{ VERSION }.


Link big-endian objects. This affects the default output format.


Link little-endian objects. This affects the default output format.


--auxiliary name

When creating an ELF shared object, set the internal DT_AUXILIARY field to the specified name. This tells the dynamic linker that the symbol table of the shared object should be used as an auxiliary filter on the symbol table of the shared object name.

If you later link a program against this filter object, then, when you run the program, the dynamic linker will see the DT_AUXILIARY field. If the dynamic linker resolves any symbols from the filter object, it will first check whether there is a definition in the shared object name. If there is one, it will be used instead of the definition in the filter object. The shared object name need not exist. Thus the shared object name may be used to provide an alternative implementation of certain functions, perhaps for debugging or for machine specific performance.

This option may be specified more than once. The DT_AUXILIARY entries will be created in the order in which they appear on the command line.

-F name

--filter name

When creating an ELF shared object, set the internal DT_FILTER field to the specified name. This tells the dynamic linker that the symbol table of the shared object which is being created should be used as a filter on the symbol table of the shared object name.

If you later link a program against this filter object, then, when you run the program, the dynamic linker will see the DT_FILTER field. The dynamic linker will resolve symbols according to the symbol table of the filter object as usual, but it will actually link to the definitions found in the shared object name. Thus the filter object can be used to select a subset of the symbols provided by the object name.

Some older linkers used the -F option throughout a compilation toolchain for specifying object-file format for both input and output object files. The GNU linker uses other mechanisms for this purpose: the -b, --format, --oformat options, the TARGET command in linker scripts, and the GNUTARGET environment variable. The GNU linker will ignore the -F option when not creating an ELF shared object.

-fini name

When creating an ELF executable or shared object, call NAME when the executable or shared object is unloaded, by setting DT_FINI to the address of the function. By default, the linker uses _fini as the function to call.


Ignored. Provided for compatibility with other tools.



Set the maximum size of objects to be optimized using the GP register to size. This is only meaningful for object file formats such as MIPS ECOFF which supports putting large and small objects into different sections. This is ignored for other object file formats.



When creating an ELF shared object, set the internal DT_SONAME field to the specified name. When an executable is linked with a shared object which has a DT_SONAME field, then when the executable is run the dynamic linker will attempt to load the shared object specified by the DT_SONAME field rather than the using the file name given to the linker.


Perform an incremental link (same as option -r).

-init name

When creating an ELF executable or shared object, call NAME when the executable or shared object is loaded, by setting DT_INIT to the address of the function. By default, the linker uses _init as the function to call.



Add archive file archive to the list of files to link. This option may be used any number of times. ld will search its path-list for occurrences of libarchive.a for every archive specified.

On systems which support shared libraries, ld may also search for libraries with extensions other than .a. Specifically, on ELF and SunOS systems, ld will search a directory for a library with an extension of .so before searching for one with an extension of .a. By convention, a .so extension indicates a shared library.

The linker will search an archive only once, at the location where it is specified on the command line. If the archive defines a symbol which was undefined in some object which appeared before the archive on the command line, the linker will include the appropriate file(s) from the archive. However, an undefined symbol in an object appearing later on the command line will not cause the linker to search the archive again.

See the -( option for a way to force the linker to search archives multiple times.

You may list the same archive multiple times on the command line.

This type of archive searching is standard for Unix linkers. However, if you are using ld on AIX , note that it is different from the behaviour of the AIX linker.



Add path searchdir to the list of paths that ld will search for archive libraries and ld control scripts. You may use this option any number of times. The directories are searched in the order in which they are specified on the command line. Directories specified on the command line are searched before the default directories. All -L options apply to all -l options, regardless of the order in which the options appear.

The default set of paths searched (without being specified with -L) depends on which emulation mode ld is using, and in some cases also on how it was configured.

The paths can also be specified in a link script with the SEARCH_DIR command. Directories specified this way are searched at the point in which the linker script appears in the command line.


Emulate the emulation linker. You can list the available emulations with the --verbose or -V options.

If the -m option is not used, the emulation is taken from the LDEMULATION environment variable, if that is defined.

Otherwise, the default emulation depends upon how the linker was configured.



Print a link map to the standard output. A link map provides information about the link, including the following:

Where object files and symbols are mapped into memory.

How common symbols are allocated.

All archive members included in the link, with a mention of the symbol which caused the archive member to be brought in.



Turn off page alignment of sections, and mark the output as NMAGIC if possible.



Set the text and data sections to be readable and writable. Also, do not page-align the data segment. If the output format supports Unix style magic numbers, mark the output as OMAGIC.

-o output


Use output as the name for the program produced by ld; if this option is not specified, the name a.out is used by default. The script command OUTPUT can also specify the output file name.

-O level

If level is a numeric values greater than zero ld optimizes the output. This might take significantly longer and therefore probably should only be enabled for the final binary.



Leave relocation sections and contents in fully linked exececutables. Post link analysis and optimization tools may need this information in order to perform correct modifications of executables. This results in larger executables.

This option is currently only supported on ELF platforms.



Generate relocatable output---i.e., generate an output file that can in turn serve as input to ld. This is often called partial linking. As a side effect, in environments that support standard Unix magic numbers, this option also sets the output file's magic number to OMAGIC. If this option is not specified, an absolute file is produced. When linking C ++ programs, this option will not resolve references to constructors; to do that, use -Ur.

When an input file does not have the same format as the output file, partial linking is only supported if that input file does not contain any relocations. Different output formats can have further restrictions; for example some a.out-based formats do not support partial linking with input files in other formats at all.

This option does the same thing as -i.

-R filename


Read symbol names and their addresses from filename, but do not relocate it or include it in the output. This allows your output file to refer symbolically to absolute locations of memory defined in other programs. You may use this option more than once.

For compatibility with other ELF linkers, if the -R option is followed by a directory name, rather than a file name, it is treated as the -rpath option.



Omit all symbol information from the output file.



Omit debugger symbol information (but not all symbols) from the output file.



Print the names of the input files as ld processes them.

-T scriptfile


Use scriptfile as the linker script. This script replaces ld's default linker script (rather than adding to it), so commandfile must specify everything necessary to describe the output file. If scriptfile does not exist in the current directory, ld looks for it in the directories specified by any preceding -L options. Multiple -T options accumulate.

-u symbol


Force symbol to be entered in the output file as an undefined symbol. Doing this may, for example, trigger linking of additional modules from standard libraries. -u may be repeated with different option arguments to enter additional undefined symbols. This option is equivalent to the EXTERN linker script command.


For anything other than C ++ programs, this option is equivalent to -r: it generates relocatable output---i.e., an output file that can in turn serve as input to ld. When linking C ++ programs, -Ur does resolve references to constructors, unlike -r. It does not work to use -Ur on files that were themselves linked with -Ur; once the constructor table has been built, it cannot be added to. Use -Ur only for the last partial link, and -r for the others.


Fatal Error:

lib/CachedMarkup.php (In template 'browse' < 'body' < 'html'):257: Error: Pure virtual

lib/main.php:944: Notice: PageInfo: Cannot find action page

lib/main.php:839: Notice: PageInfo: Unknown action

Fatal PhpWiki Error

lib/CachedMarkup.php (In template 'browse' < 'body' < 'html'):257: Error: Pure virtual