Updated: 08/08/2017 by Computer Hope

Alternatively referred to as intermediate code, bytecode is compiled programming code that targets a virtual machine rather than a specific computer architecture. Bytecode allows a single compiled binary to run, and perform with near-native efficiency, on a diverse array of platforms.


In Java, bytecode compilation is used to "compile once, run anywhere." Compiled Java programs will run on any computer that has a Java Virtual Machine installed.

Languages that compile to bytecode include:

Programming terms