The D programming language, was developed in-house by Digital Mars a small US software company, also known for producing a C compiler (known over time as Datalight C compiler, Zorland C and Zortech C), the first C++ compiler for Windows (originally known as Zortech C++, renamed to Symantec C++, and now Digital Mars C++ (DMC++) and various utilities (such as an IDE for Windows that supports the MFC library).
On their web site, Digital Mars hosts the language specification and a freely-distributable compiler (for Windows and Linux). The compiler back-end is proprietary, only the compiler front-end is licensed under both the Artistic License and the GNU GPL.
Although D originated as a re-engineering of C++ and is predominantly influenced by it, D is not a variant of C++. D has redesigned some C++ features and has been influenced by concepts used in other programming languages, such as Java, C# and Eiffel.
Differences between D and C++:
- D does not support multiple inheritance.
- D does not support complex data types with value semantics.
See the D Programming book for more details.