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UNIX/LINUX Command – objcopy

Last updated Apr 27, 2021


objcopy—Copy and translate object files


objcopy [ –Fbfdname|–target=bfdname ] [ –Ibfdname| –input–target=bfdname ] [ –Obfdname|–output–target=bfdname ] [ –Rsectionname|–remove–section=sectionname ] [ –S| –strip–all ][–g|–strip–debug ][–x|–discard–all ][–X|–discard–locals][–bbyte|–byte=byte ] [ –iinterleave|–interleave=interleave ] [ –v|–verbose][–V|–version ][–help ] infile [ outfile ]


The GNU objcopy utility copies the contents of an object file to another. objcopy uses the GNU BFD library to read and write the object files. It can write the destination object file in a format different from that of the source object file. The exact behavior of objcopy is controlled by command-line options.

objcopy creates temporary files to do its translations and deletes them afterward. objcopy uses BFD to do all its translation work; it knows about all the formats BFD knows about, and thus is able to recognize most formats without being told explicitly.

infile and outfile are the source and output files, respectively. If you do not specify outfile, objcopy creates a temporary file and destructively renames the result with the name of the input file.


Option  Description 
–I bfdname, –input–target=bfdname Consider the source file’s object format to be bfdname, rather than attempting to deduce it.
–O bfdname, –output–target=bfdname Write the output file using the object format bfdname.
–F bfdname, –target=bfdname Use bfdname as the object format for both the input and the output file; that is, simply transfer data from source to destination with no translation.
–R sectionname, –remove-section, =sectionname Remove the named section from the file. This option may be given more than once. Note that using this option inappropriately may make the output file unusable.
–S, –strip–all Do not copy relocation and symbol information from the source file.
–g, –strip–debug Do not copy debugging symbols from the source file.
–x, –discard–all Do not copy nonglobal symbols from the source file.
–X, –discard–locals Do not copy compiler-generated local symbols. (These usually start with L or .).
–b byte, –byte=byte Keep only every byte byte of the input file (header data is not affected). byte can be in the range from 0 to the interleave-1. This option is useful for creating files to program ROMs. It is typically used with an srec output target.
–i interleave, –interleave=interleave Only copy one out of every interleave bytes. The one to copy is selected by the –b or –byte option. The default is 4. The interleave is ignored if neither –b nor –byte is given.
–v, –verbose Verbose output: list all object files modified. In the case of archives, objcopy –V lists all members of the archive.
–V, –version Show the version number of objcopy and exit.
–help Show a summary of the options to objcopy and exit.

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