Dynamic-Link Libraries (DLLs): What Are They?
DLLs are files that contain reusable code that can be shared by multiple programs. This means that programs can conserve memory by sharing code rather than containing its own code.
Building a DLL in Visual Studio
Building a DLL in Visual Studio may seem like a daunting task but it’s actually easier than you might think. In this article, we’ll go over the steps on how to build a DLL in Visual Studio.
Step 1: Creating a new project
First, you need to open the IDE and select “Create a new project” from the start page. Under “Templates,” select “Visual C++” and then “Dynamic-Link Library (DLL)”. After that, you need to name your project and select a location for your project files.
Step 2: Adding code
After creating a new project in Visual Studio, two files are generated- a header file and a source file. The header file is where you define the interface for your library, while the source file contains the implementation. To add code to the library, open the source file, and start writing your code. Don’t forget that any functions you want to be used outside of the DLL should be declared in the header file.
Step 3: Defining exports
When building a DLL, it’s necessary to inform the linker which functions should be exported. The __declspec(dllexport) keyword before the function declaration is used to expose the function and enable it to be used by other programs.
Step 4: Building the DLL
After defining exports, you can build the DLL by selecting “Build Solution” from the “Build” menu. Visual Studio will compile your code and generate a DLL file in the project’s output directory.
To use the DLL in another project, you need to link your application to the library. The quickest way to do this is to add the DLL file to your project and then add a reference to the header file in your code.
In conclusion, building a DLL in Visual Studio is an uncomplicated process that can save you precious time and effort in developing applications. Follow the steps above and create a DLL that can be linked with other projects to improve efficiency and productivity.