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Old 05-08-2002, 12:24 PM   #8
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Denmark
Posts: 197
Me! Me meme ME! I'll take the easy one

Little endian: Derived from Little End First.
Big endian: Derived from Big End First.

What does that mean? It means that if you store a word (2 bytes), you can store it in two ways.

Take the number 1234. That's 0x04D2 in hex. So, the bytes 04 and D2. Now, the "little end" is the end that has the least significance to the actual size of the number (so, the little end is the one we normally put last). The "big end" is thus the end that has most significance. So, 1234 - hex 0x04D2 becomes:

04 D2 - in big endian byte order. The "big end" is stored first.
D2 04 - in little endian byte order. The "little end" is stored first.

The same thing goes for double-words (4 bytes). The number 123456789 - in hex: 0x75BCD15 - can either be stored:

big endian: 07 5B CD 15
little endian: 15 CD 5B 07

Hope this was at least relatively comprehensible

- Serge
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