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Address attributes for load and execution regions

A subset of the load and execution region attributes inform the linker about the content of the region and how it behaves after linking.

These attributes are:

ABSOLUTE

The content is placed at a fixed address that does not change after linking.

PI

The content does not depend on any fixed address and might be moved after linking without any extra processing.

Note

This attribute is not supported if an image contains execute-only sections.

RELOC

The content depends on fixed addresses. Relocation information is output to enable the content to be moved to another location by another tool.

Note

You cannot explicitly use this attribute for an execution region.

Note

This attribute is not supported if an image contains execute-only sections.

OVERLAY

The content is placed at a fixed address that does not change after linking. The content might overlap with other regions designated as OVERLAY regions.

Inheritance rules for address attributes

In general, all the execution regions within a load region have the same address attribute. To make this easy to select, the address attributes can be inherited from a previous region so that they only have to be set in one place. The rules for setting and inheriting address attributes are:

  • Explicitly setting the address attribute:

    • A load region address attribute can be explicitly set with the ABSOLUTE, PI, RELOC, or OVERLAY attributes.

    • An execution region address attribute can be explicitly set with the ABSOLUTE, PI, or OVERLAY attributes. An execution region can only inherit the RELOC attribute from the parent load region.

  • Implicitly setting the address attribute when none is specified:

    • The OVERLAY attribute cannot be inherited. A region with the OVERLAY attribute cannot inherit.

    • A base address load or execution region always defaults to ABSOLUTE.

    • A +offset load region inherits the address attribute from the previous load region or ABSOLUTE if no previous load region exists.

    • A +offset execution region inherits the address attribute from the previous execution region or parent load region if no previous execution region exists.

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