GCC -fpic option


Generate position-independent code (PIC) suitable for use in a shared library, if supported for the target machine. Such code accesses all constant addresses through a global offset table (GOT). The dynamic loader resolves the GOT entries when the program starts (the dynamic loader is not part of GCC; it is part of the operating system). If the GOT size for the linked executable exceeds a machine-specific maximum size, you get an error message from the linker indicating that -fpic does not work; in that case, recompile with -fPIC instead. (These maximums are 8k on the SPARC, 28k on AArch64 and 32k on the m68k and RS/6000. The x86 has no such limit.)

Position-independent code requires special support, and therefore works only on certain machines. For the x86, GCC supports PIC for System V but not for the Sun 386i. Code generated for the IBM RS/6000 is always position-independent.

When this flag is set, the macros __pic__ and __PIC__ are defined to 1.

from Wikipedia :

In computing, position-independent code (PIC) or position-independent executable (PIE) is a body of machine code that, being placed somewhere in the primary memory, executes properly regardless of its absolute address. PIC is commonly used for shared libraries, so that the same library code can be loaded in a location in each program address space where it will not overlap any other uses of memory (for example, other shared libraries)

Example :

swig -python hello.i
gcc -fpic -c hellomodule.c hello_wrap.c -I/usr/include/python3.4/
gcc -shared hellomodule.o hello_wrap.o -o _hello.so

References :

https://gcc.gnu.org/onlinedocs/gcc/Option-Summary.html https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Position-independent_code