C vs C++

C vs C++

 The main difference between the C and C++ programming languages is that while C doesn’t support objects and classes, C++ supports them. C is often called a function-driven language, and C++ is an object-driven language

C and C++ are two of the most popular programming languages. These languages form the fundamentals of various video games, applications, embedded systems, etc. 

What’s the C Programming Language?

C is a general-purpose and procedural computer programming language. Its key highlight is its machine dependency. C can be used to create operating systems for complex programs like Git, Oracle Database, Python, and more. 

C forms the base of other programming languages and was initially developed at Bell Labs by Dennis Ritchie, a computer scientist, in 1972. You can learn C through any video tutorial or official documentation. 

Years ago, C was used to create mainframes, microcomputers, and minicomputers. Even after the emergence of several other programming languages, such as Java, Python, and PHP, C is still an important language to learn.

Also, C has some unique features that make it worth learning over other programming languages.

Features of the C Programming Language 

  • Procedural
  • Supports Dynamic Memory Allocation
  • Low-level programming language (due to no automatic memory management)
  • Modularity
  • Machine-dependent
  • Extensible
C vs C++
Learning both C and C++ can be useful for a variety of projects.

What’s the C++ Programming Language?

C++ is an upgraded version of the C programming language. Bjarne Stroustrup developed this syntax-based language at Bell labs in 1980. 

The main reason behind creating this language was to add Object Orientation to the C programming language. It’s compatible with C and is safer and well-structured. 

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C++ is the fastest programming language to develop complex, high-performance applications.

Features of the C++ Programming Language

  • Compiled language
  • Rich library of functions 
  • Machine-independent 
  • Extensible
  • Supports features such as polymorphism, inheritance, and encapsulation
  • Fast execution speed
  • Recursion
  • Low-level programming language (due to no automatic memory management)
C vs C++
C++ is based on the C programming language.

C vs C++

C vs C++
Supports the structural programming language. Here, the code is checked line by line Types of Programming Language C++ is an object-oriented programming language that supports the concept of classes and objects
Follows the “top-down approach” Approach Follows the “bottom-up approach”
Supports only built-in data types and not user-defined data types Suitable For Supports both built-in and user-defined data types
C programs are saved with the “.c” extension File Extension C++ programs are saved with the “.cpp” extension
Doesn’t support object-oriented features of C++, and hence, it is not compatible with C++ programs Compatibility with Each Other Takes most of C’s procedural constructs. Any C program will compile and run fine with the C++ compiler
Not compatible with other languages.  Compatibility with Other Languages Yes, Compatible with other languages.
Absent Function Overloading  Present
Allows multiple declarations of global variables Global Variables Doesn’t allow multiple declarations of global variables
Inline functions are not supported in C Inline Functions C++ supports inline functions, as well as macros
Data security is negligible in C Data Security In C++, data is tightly secured using access specifiers, encapsulation, classes, etc.
Not supported in C Namespace Supported in C++
C program uses the <stdio.h> header file Header File Used C++ program uses <iostream.h> header file

Differences Between C and C++

When comparing C vs C++, remember that C is procedural with no support for objects and classes, while C++ combines procedural and object-oriented programming languages. 

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C++ has significantly more libraries and functions to use than C. If you’re working with complex software, C++ is a better fit because you have more libraries to rely on. 

C++ is often a requirement for various programming roles. However, C is quite simple and is the basis for C++. 

Both these languages are worth learning if you wish to pursue a career in programming. 

If you enjoyed this article, check out our post comparing Java and JavaScript.


Vanessa is passionate about written communication, especially after beginning her career as a middle school English teacher. She’s an experienced content marketer as well. Vanessa loves to analyze, compare, and contrast, which is why she writes for ContrastHub. Besides writing, Vanessa is a wife, mom, entrepreneur, spicy food enthusiast, comedy nerd and lifelong learner.

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