This is my personal blog. The views expressed on these pages are mine alone and not those of my employer.

Monday, September 15, 2003

I've been playing around with the Gecko ActiveX
control
. Check out this screenshot I made of Gecko
being embedded into Internet Explorer showing a remote
XUL user-interface (the XUL Channels RSS Reader).
Things work well, and it is fast. Not sure of the
memory usage; I see something named 'svchost' in my
Windows Task Manager, which I imagine is the Gecko
ActiveX control running out-of-process at about 15
megabytes. Thats a wild guess though. The speed is
great, popup windows don't work.

Most people don't know that this control is now bundled with Mozilla and FireBird; all you need to do is to register the control. Drop down to a shell, change to your Mozilla bin directory, and type the following:

regsvr32 mozctlx.dll

Make sure you typed mozctlx.dll and not mozctl.dll, since both of those files exist. Now open Internet Explorer; you'll need to configure Internet Explorer so that it will run unsigned ActiveX controls (The Gecko ActiveX control is unsigned; we should start signing this with a key). After doing so, go to this page to have the Gecko control be embedded into IE. You can then navigate over to a XUL app, which is what I did. You could also simply create your own HTML that uses the object tag to refer to the Gecko control:


<object
classid="clsid:1339B54C-3453-11D2-93B9-000000000000"
id="Browser1"
data="DATA:application/x-oleobject;BASE64,TLU5E1M00hGTuQAAAAAAAAADAADhOQAA3xoAAA=="
width="560" height="260">
</object>


Now you can simply script this control using Internet Explorer JavaScript within your HTML page:

Browser1.Navigate(url);
Browser1.GoBack();
Browser1.GoForward();


To have it run your XUL application, make sure the width and height attributes are correct. Then, after the document has loaded (set a onload event handler), call Browser1.Navigate(url_to_your_XUL_app).

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