Difference Between Compiler and Interpreter

Compiler vs Interpreter

Compiler and interpreter, both basically serve the same purpose. They convert one level of language to another level. A compiler converts the high level instructions into machine language while an interpreter converts the high level instruction into some intermediate form and after that, the instruction is executed.


A compiler is defined as a computer program that is used to convert high level instructions or language into a form that can be understood by the computer. Since computer can understand only in binary numbers so a compiler is used to fill the gap otherwise it would have been difficult for a human to find info in the 0 and 1 form.

Earlier the compilers were simple programs which were used to convert symbols into bits. The programs were also very simple and they contained a series of steps translated by hand into the data. However, this was a very time consuming process. So, some parts were programmed or automated. This formed the first compiler.

More sophisticated compliers are created using the simpler ones. With every new version, more rules added to it and a more natural language environment is created for the human programmer. The complier programs are evolving in this way which improves their ease of use.

There are specific compliers for certain specific languages or tasks. Compliers can be multiple or multistage pass. The first pass can convert the high level language into a language that is closer to computer language. Then the further passes can convert it into final stage for the purpose of execution.


The programs created in high level languages can be executed by using two different ways. The first one is the use of compiler and the other method is to use an interpreter. High level instruction or language is converted into intermediate from by an interpreter. The advantage of using an interpreter is that the high level instruction does not goes through compilation stage which can be a time consuming method. So, by using an interpreter, the high level program is executed directly. That is the reason why some programmers use interpreters while making small sections as this saves time.

Almost all high level programming languages have compilers and interpreters. But some languages like LISP and BASIC are designed in such a way that the programs made using them are executed by an interpreter.

Difference between compiler and interpreter

• A complier converts the high level instruction into machine language while an interpreter converts the high level instruction into an intermediate form.

• Before execution, entire program is executed by the compiler whereas after translating the first line, an interpreter then executes it and so on.

• List of errors is created by the compiler after the compilation process while an interpreter stops translating after the first error.

• An independent executable file is created by the compiler whereas interpreter is required by an interpreted program each time.

  • Chhavi uniyal

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  • http://chankeypathak.blogspot.com Chankey Pathak

    Thanks, up to the mark!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003102993680 Aishwarya Dwibedy

    thaks.. for the upto the mark information…!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

  • animesh gupta

    great difference has been shown here. Now my confusion has been removed.
    thnx so much

  • Caroline

    thanks for just what i wanted…!!!! :-)

  • Caroline

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  • Caroline

    up to date information of compiler and iterpreter…. :-) thnks for it…!!!

  • Caroline

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  • Cartouchie

    Thanx for the tips…

  • Akshay Lahane

    gud 1..