C | Pointer Basics | Question 7

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#include<stdio.h> 
int main() 
   int a; 
   char *x; 
   x = (char *) &a; 
   a = 512; 
   x[0] = 1; 
   x[1] = 2; 
   printf("%d\n",a);   
   return 0; 
}
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What is the output of above program?
(A) Machine dependent
(B) 513
(C) 258
(D) Compiler Error

Answer: (A)
Explanation: Output is 513 in a little endian machine. To understand this output, let integers be stored using 16 bits. In a little endian machine, when we do x[0] = 1 and x[1] = 2, the number a is changed to 00000001 00000010 which is representation of 513 in a little endian machine.

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