The link-editor is provided as a 32–bit application and a 64–bit application. Each link-editor can operate on 32–bit objects and 64–bit objects. On systems that are running a 64–bit environment, both versions of the link-editor can be executed. On systems that are running a 32–bit environment, only the 32–bit version of the link-editor can be executed.
The runtime linker is provided as a 32–bit object and a 64–bit object. The 32–bit object is used to execute 32–bit processes, and the 64–bit object is used to execute 64–bit processes.
The operations of the link-editor and runtime linker on 32–bit objects and 64–bit objects are identical. This document typically uses 32–bit examples. Cases where 64–bit processing differs from the 32–bit processing are highlighted.