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What is the Compiler Doing?

guile1
guile1 asked
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Last Modified: 2010-08-05
I am using VC++ 6.0.  What happens when a file such as #include<iostream> is inserted into several different files all within the same project?  Obviously, it is not necessary to include a file more than once but it seems to be done quite often.   Does this hinder the performance of the executable?  What exactly is happening?  Just wondering...
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The use of #ifdef in that maner is very common.  It is necessary because C/C++ has rules against multiple definitions of the same "thing" in the same translation unit.  Without those #ifdef guards, the code would probably not compile.
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