Using C++ in Embedded Systems – Applying C++11/C++14


Embedded Development & Debugging
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3 days
SEK 17.900
DKK 15.800
EUR 2.100 (FI)

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Lena Bernhardsson
+46 (0) 40 59 22 09

Over the years, the object-orientated programming turned out to be a sound and battle-hardened way of working in system development. Traditionally C has been the dominating programming language in the embedded system context.

This training intends to introduce C++ as the common extension of C when applying object-oriented embedded system development. Since C++ encloses C, this training takes us from C to C++ in a natural way, and looks under the hood of how C++ is implemented. This is especially valuable to comprehend when applying C++ in an embedded resource limited environment.  The C++ standard has recently been undergoing a major revision, a.k.a. as C++11, and a new one is on its way, C++14. This course addresses subjects brought in with these revisions that are especially useful like high performance memory management, concurrency making use of a multicore environment, and bare-metal close to the hardware programming.


The major objective of this class is that you shall be able to use C++ in a “correct way”.

  • Introduce C++ as an object oriented language alternative in an embedded system context
  • Show the similarities ‑ and differences ‑ with the C language
  • Comprehend different memory management strategies – especially the move semantics introduced with C++11
  • Look under the hood and understand what different paradigms in C++ leads to in machine code
  • Use templates to achieve type safe high order abstractions for bare-metal close to the hardware programming – memory mapped I/O as well as interrupts – especially the variadic templates introduced with C++11
  • Provide some useful design patterns especially applicable in an embedded context
  • A few exercises in order to practice some concepts


This training is aimed C++- programmers who intend to start using C++ in an embedded system context.

Previous Knowledge

The course requires basic knowledge in C++ programming, corresponding to our trainings ”C++ – Level 1” and ”C++ Level 2 – Introducing C++11”.

Practical Exercises

During the training you will practice the presented concepts in a number of exercises. We will use the open and free integrated development environment from Eclipse


  1. What’s an Embedded System?
    • Simple Definition
    • Some Milestones
    • Characteristics
    • Why using C++?
  2. Comparison with C
    • C: A subset of C++ – almost
    • Performance
    • Added ”Free” Functionality
    • Why not using C++?
  3. Classes
    • Member Variables
      • Instance variables
      • Class variables
    • Member Functions
      • Instance functions
      • Class functions
    • Implicit Methods
      • Constructor
        • Initialization
        • Delegation
      • Destructor
      • Copy assignment operator
    • Move Semantics – avoiding unnecessary deep copy
    • struct in C++
    • Package/Namespace
  4. Inheritance
    • Introduction
    • Realization
    • Performance
    • Multiple Inheritance
    • Virtual Inheritance
  5. Polymorphism
    • Introduction
    • Virtual Function
    • Virtual Destructor
    • Implementation
    • Runtime Type Information, RTTI
    • Performance
  6. Templates
    • Introduction
    • Function Template
    • Class Template
      • Variadic Templates
    • Code Bloat
    • Implementation Strategies
    • Template Meta Programming
    • Template versus Inheritance?
  7. Error Handling
    • Exception Handling
    • Performance Issues
    • Implementation
  8. Inline Code
    • When to Use?
    • Strategies
  9. Start-up
    • System Start-up
    • The C Part
    • The C++ Part
  10. Standard Library
    • Standard Template Library, STL
    • iostream Library
    • Major extensions made on STL due to C++11:
      • Move semantics
      • Variadic Templates
      • Concurrency
  11. Memory Management
    • The C++ Memory Model
      • The stdint-types
      • Atomic types and their operations
    • Strategies
    • Variables
    • Placement new
    • User Defined Memory Management
  12. Interoperation between C and C++
    • Name Mangling
    • Static Initialization
    • Dynamic Memory
    • struct Contents
      • POD – Plain Old Data type
  13. Design Patterns
    • RAII – Resource Acquisition Is Initialization
    • Memory-mapped I/O
    • Interrupt
    • Initialization of Static Objects

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