Unlike Free Pascal, GPC is not self-hosted, i.e. it is not able to translate and build itself. Rather, it acts as a frontend to GNU Compiler Collection (GCC), so that Pascal code is translated to C and from C to machine language.
This has the advantage that it is instantly portable to any platform the GCC compiler supports. However, since GNU Pascal is not more than a frontend, it does have to adapt to every major change that is done to GCC. Therefore, new major versions are adopted only slowly.
Free Pascal is expected to generate more efficient machine code than GPC.
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