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ActiveX in Netscape

Posted on 2000-05-05
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Last Modified: 2010-04-02
I have written an ActiveX application and it works great in Internet Explorer but not at all in Netscape.  I did not realize Netscape did not support it.  Is there an easy way to convert the ActiveX application into something that both browsers can use?
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Question by:HrdwareGuy
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Laminamia063099 earned 150 total points
ID: 2782018
No, there is no easy way to convert an ActiveX application so that both browsers can use it.  Netscape's security model is set up so that it does not allow web page applications to access local resources, including DLL's that are needed to run an ActiveX application.  IExplorer is set up to allow the COM/DCOM/ActiveX capabilities of Windows to be distributed over the Internet.

Laminamia :)
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by:HrdwareGuy
ID: 2782046
So is there any way, other than Java to have something work in both browsers?
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by:Laminamia063099
ID: 2782148
To write an application that runs in a web page that works in both IExplorer and Netscape?  I don't know of any way except for Java, and it isn't a great solution for this type of problem, because it also has restrictions on what it can do in a browser.  

Another problem is that any application that you write may need to be portable across OS platforms.  Any application written in ActiveX (or other MS proprietary software) will not run on UNIX, Linux, Mac, etc.

Sorry I don't have an answer there.

What type of application are you trying to write?

Laminamia :)
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Author Comment

by:HrdwareGuy
ID: 2788395
I am trying to write a web based install program for some software.  The ideal situation is as follows:  All files needed for the install reside in a directory on the server.  A customer pulls up a web page which passes a parameter to the application to tell it what directory to change into for the download.  The download program in the web page downloads nothing else to the client machine.  The user clicks Go, the software is downloaded and then runs the setup program for the downloaded software.

We currently have self extracting zip files, but our customers don't always remember where they saved them or may have bad connections and have to download many times.  One of the functions of this application would be to track the files downloaded so if something happens, the same files do not get downloaded as long as they are current.
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by:Laminamia063099
ID: 2788641
Well, here is my take on the situation.  You can either:
   1. Have them install a program that would handle future installations, but this would be just as hard as what they are currently doing.
   2. Have them use IExplorer when needing to download these files.
   3. Provide them with the option of doing it with Explorer or downloading them manually (let them choose).
   4. Writing a signed Java applet to take care of it.

It's a tough situation, that as of now, there is no great solution to that I know of that isn't proprietary (like MS owned IExplorer/ActiveX).

Good luck.

Laminamia :)
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