Go Q & A


What is the purpose of the “go run” command in Go?

The go run command in Go is a convenient tool used to compile and execute Go source code files directly from the command line without explicitly building an executable binary. The go run command is commonly used during development and testing phases to quickly run and evaluate Go code without the need for intermediate build artifacts.


Here’s the purpose and usage of the go run command in Go:


  • Compile and Execute: The go run command compiles the specified Go source code files into a temporary executable binary in memory and executes the resulting binary immediately. Unlike the go build command, which generates a standalone executable file, go run compiles the code on-the-fly and executes it without creating a persistent binary file.
  • Fast Iteration: go run facilitates rapid iteration and experimentation during development by eliminating the need to manually compile and build executable binaries for every code change. Developers can use go run to quickly test code modifications, verify behavior, and iterate on solutions without the overhead of manual compilation steps.
  • Dependencies Resolution: When invoked with the go run command, the Go toolchain automatically resolves and fetches any required dependencies or external packages referenced by the source code files. go run ensures that all necessary dependencies are available and up-to-date before compiling and executing the code.
  • Temporary Execution: The executable binary generated by go run exists only in memory and is not persisted to the filesystem. Once the execution completes, the temporary binary is discarded, and any changes made to the source code files are reflected immediately upon subsequent invocations of go run.
  • Single File Execution: go run is particularly useful for running standalone Go source code files or small Go programs consisting of a single file. Developers can use go run to execute individual Go scripts, utility programs, or code snippets without the overhead of managing project structures or build configurations.
  • Debugging and Testing: go run can be used for ad-hoc debugging, exploratory testing, and code profiling purposes during the development lifecycle. Developers can insert debugging statements, diagnostic output, or profiling instrumentation into their Go code and use go run to observe the behavior and performance of the program in real-time.


The go run command in Go provides a convenient and lightweight mechanism for compiling and executing Go source code files directly from the command line. By leveraging go run, developers can streamline the development workflow, iterate quickly on code changes, and evaluate Go programs without the need for manual compilation steps or intermediate build artifacts.

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Over 5 years of experience in Golang. Led the design and implementation of a distributed system and platform for building conversational chatbots.