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C++/You might know the microsoft technology 'late-binding'. Is late-binding the same as polymorphism?



You might know the microsoft technology 'late-binding'. Is late-binding the same as polymorphism?

Happy New Year!

Thanks. Hope your new year is going well also.

This question has little to do with C++.

If you mean binding with respect to COM then the COM glossary has this to say on the subject:

        Associating a name with its referent.
        Specifically, locating the object named by a
        moniker, putting it into its running state
        if it isn't already, and returning an interface
        pointer to it. Objects can be bound at run time
        (also called late binding or dynamic binding) or
        at compile time (also called static binding).
        See also Moniker and Running state."

If you wish to know more I suggest you refer to the MSDN web site at - as COM is far to complex to go into here, and is not a C++ topic in any case.

All COM objects (like CORBA) rely on polymorphism as they work though interfaces which merely define the operations that an object supporting an interface may perform - but they provide no implementations. In C++ terms an interface would be an abstract base class containing only pure virtual member functions.  


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Ralph McArdell


I am a software developer with more than 15 years C++ experience and over 25 years experience developing a wide variety of applications for Windows NT/2000/XP, UNIX, Linux and other platforms. I can help with basic to advanced C++, C (although I do not write just-C much if at all these days so maybe ask in the C section about purely C matters), software development and many platform specific and system development problems.


My career started in the mid 1980s working as a batch process operator for the now defunct Inner London Education Authority, working on Prime mini computers. I then moved into the role of Programmer / Analyst, also on the Primes, then into technical support and finally into the micro computing section, using a variety of 16 and 8 bit machines. Following the demise of the ILEA I worked for a small company, now gone, called Hodos. I worked on a part task train simulator using C and the Intel DVI (Digital Video Interactive) - the hardware based predecessor to Indeo. Other projects included a CGI based train simulator (different goals to the first), and various other projects in C and Visual Basic (er, version 1 that is). When Hodos went into receivership I went freelance and finally managed to start working in C++. I initially had contracts working on train simulators (surprise) and multimedia - I worked on many of the Dorling Kindersley CD-ROM titles and wrote the screensaver games for the Wallace and Gromit Cracking Animator CD. My more recent contracts have been more traditionally IT based, working predominately in C++ on MS Windows NT, 2000. XP, Linux and UN*X. These projects have had wide ranging additional skill sets including system analysis and design, databases and SQL in various guises, C#, client server and remoting, cross porting applications between platforms and various client development processes. I have an interest in the development of the C++ core language and libraries and try to keep up with at least some of the papers on the ISO C++ Standard Committee site at


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