Click here to Skip to main content
15,850,190 members
Please Sign up or sign in to vote.
1.00/5 (2 votes)
See more:
Can anyone please brief me the difference between an API and a dll ?

Chaithanya M

A library is pre-compiled code (dll or lib) and will contain classes of coded functionality. An API is a description (documentation or list) of methods and data.
System.Web contains compiled code (a dll) and is a library.
Share this answer
I copied and pasted your question title in Google for you: here[^]

Sample links:
Similar discussion - 1[^]
Similar discussion - 2[^]
Similar discussion - 3[^]
Share this answer
M.CHAITHANYA 12-May-11 1:41am    

Happened to look at the same links beforer i posted this,but i am not satisfied with answers that these links provide.

Chaithanya M
Kim Togo 12-May-11 4:57am    
Good links. My 5.
An API (Application Programming Interface) is a collection of interface routines to a particular library, collection of libraries or operating system. This allows application programmers to use the functions in the libraries without needing to know the internal structure of the system they are accessing.

A DLL (Dynamic Link Library) is an object module comprising a set of related routines that may be part of a larger API. DLLs are loaded into memory on demand where their code may be shared by many application programs.

There is plenty of information on MSDN about DLLs.
Share this answer
M.CHAITHANYA 12-May-11 6:32am    
Hi Richard,
As stated above in he API definition ,an API is Colletion of interface methods.Here do you mean API is collection on unimplemented methods of Interfaces ,which should be implemented by the API this correct ?
Richard MacCutchan 12-May-11 8:59am    
My apologies but the term 'interface' was a bad choice here. Rather these are public methods (or functions if you prefer) to give access to the features of the library (which may also contain private methods). The documentation on MSDN gives full details of the Windows API, although the physical API comprises the DLL files on your Windows PC.

Does that help?
markovl 12-May-11 9:00am    
No, I think what he means is that the user is the consumer of the "interface" - thus not caring about it's actual implementation.
Richard MacCutchan 12-May-11 9:07am    
I was programming before Java/C++ were invented so I still use the word 'interface' in its original English sense. :(
markovl 12-May-11 9:15am    
Yes, I got what you meant :). My reply was to the OP.

This content, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)

CodeProject, 20 Bay Street, 11th Floor Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5J 2N8 +1 (416) 849-8900