laurentsd
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

new HTML bridge is ready for beta

The "HTML bridge" is an add-on to the Web Client SDK 5.5 allowing you to build UI plugins with HTML/Javascript instead of Flex.  We are starting a short beta period of a few weeks before it gets added to the SDK 5.5.1 release for everyone to use (Q1-2014).  Please download the Beta Agreement attached to this message and send it back to me in a private message (*). Once our legal dept reviews it I will send you the link to download the beta bits in a private reply.  You can continue to use this forum to post questions and feedback once you start using it.

(*) VMware partners already signed up on vmdev.net will get contacted directly there and don't need to use this PRBA document.

Features summary

  • Any UI extensions or component can be built with HTML and Javascript. All extension points are supported.
  • New Javascript APIs provide the same level of functionality as the Flex API
  • You can use the Javascript libraries of your choice for on the UI side.
  • Easy access to the Web Client server with REST calls and Spring Web MVC integration.
  • The Java API doesn't change, so data adapters and java services are similar as with the standard SDK.
  • New HTML versions of the standard SDK samples, as well as new samples.
  • Eclipse wizard updated to create a new HTML project from scratch.
  • Compatibility with the future Web Client HTML platform when using our guidelines.

bridge-overview.png

Here is a HTML sample using Sencha's Ext JS library.

extjschassis-summary.png

30 Replies
laurentsd
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

We do need more developers who can test or play with this HTML bridge between now and early January in order to meet your expectations!

Please give it a try and send your feedback.  Thanks!

raviorka
Contributor
Contributor

Unable to send you a private message.Can you please guide us how we can get the beta agreement to you ?

-- vpr

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laurentsd
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

You need to login in order to send private messages.

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raviorka
Contributor
Contributor

It mentions that I need 2 points to send you a private message.

Am not sure how to get those.I seem to have only 1 Smiley Sad

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rangajith
Contributor
Contributor

Is it possible to use an external web site for views instead of the local html files in the plugin project. I can use an IFrame to host the external web site content in the local html file but wondering is there any elegant way.

You mention something about a HtmlProxyController in Re: Question about IFrame based HTML content hosting within the web client (I know its not related to the new HTML bridge. But wanted to see if i can use similar concept here). Can you please explain it more? It would great if you have some sample code for that.

-Thanks

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laurentsd
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

if you host html resources on an external web server you must use HTTPS and have a valid certificate on that server so that the browser knows it's a trusted source (otherwise the user needs to acknowledge the non-trusted warning)

You can also use an HtmlProxyController to go through the Web Client's Java layer in order to access external html resources. It's basically a controller getting your URL as input and executing something like this:

@RequestMapping(method = RequestMethod.GET)

@ResponseBody

public Map<String, Object> getData(

         @RequestParam(value = "url", required = true) String url)

         throws Exception {

...

   HttpClient client = new HttpClient();

   GetMethod getMethod = new GetMethod(url);

   client.executeMethod(getMethod);

   String content = getMethod.getResponseBodyAsString();

   Map<String, Object> result = new HashMap<String, Object>();

  result.put("content", content);

  return result;

rangajith
Contributor
Contributor

Thanks for the reply. I got the idea. I think for us, the best option would be the HTTPS with valid cert (which we already have).

Btw, the "Html bridge" is awesome. Good work guys..  This will same us a lot of time..

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laurentsd
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

> Btw, the "Html bridge" is awesome. Good work guys..  This will same us a lot of time..

Thanks, glad you like it!

For people coming to VMware PEX 2014 in San Francisco in 2 weeks I will have a presentation on the HTML bridge on Wednesday 2/14, 3:15 PM - Moscone West, Room 2014.

rangajith
Contributor
Contributor

In FAQ for the Html Bridge it says that it would be better if we do not do a mixed plugin

Is it possible to mix HTML and Flex views in the same plugin?

Yes, you can build a "hybrid" plugin with some views using Flex and others using HTML. Such plugin is more complex to set up so it should be avoided unless you have a real need for it. Also it may not be supported "as is" in the future HTML 5 platform, i.e. it will require some manual updates and repackaging instead of being transformed on the fly.

Do you think its OK if we do 2 war files which has 2 different plugin XMLs (one with FLEX UI Only and other with  "HTML bridge" based UIs only) and sharing the same jar for the data adapters. ?

for e.g.

plugin-package.xml inside the zip file will have this

      <bundle id="com.acme.javaservice" />

      <bundle id="com.acme.flexui" />

      <bundle id="com.acme.htmlbridgeui" />

(Our plan is to move completely to the html bridge. But planning to do it in multiple steps. This is to get the transition started without breaking the existing UI written in FLEX)

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laurentsd
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Yes, there is no limit on the number of war or jar files inside a plugin-package. Having this separation between Flex UI and HTML UI is a good idea.

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ryantodd
Contributor
Contributor

Hi Laurent,

I'm doing preliminary testing with the HTML bridge and when I add a view to the summarySectionViews extension point for VMs, my view portlet shows up, but it shows up with a link "Click to view content" which displays the view content in a pop up. Is this expected behavior, and is this something that is specific to the HTML bridge functionality, or is there something that I need to specify in order to make it display the content inline?

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laurentsd
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

hi Ryan,

This is the normal behavior of the HTML bridge for a summarySectionViews extension, it is documented in the section "vSphere Object Portlets (summarySectionViews)" of docs/html-bridge.html. The reason  HTML content is not supported for a summary page's portlet is that it would be too difficult to make an iFrame behave correctly "as a portlet", i.e. moved around, resized, scroll with the page. The other types of view extension or dialogs only show 1 iFrame at a time and in a fixed location.

In reality this limitation only affects vSphere object summary views. The summary view of custom objects doesn't need summarySectionViews, the whole content can be implemented in HTML as we show in the different chassis samples.

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ryantodd
Contributor
Contributor

Ah, thanks Laurent, good to know. I guess my question then boils down at this point similar to what rangajith was asking. In your opinion would it be easier at this point to craft 2 separate modules, perhaps sharing the same service, or would creating a hybrid plugin to accommodate a flex view for the summary be worth the effort?

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laurentsd
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

The only difference is whether you want 2 different UI projects generating 2 UI plugin wars instead of 1 project with 1 war.  It's easier to get started with 2 separate projects because the SDK's Eclipse project wizard lets you create both Flex and HTML projects, but not an hybrid project like the vsphere-wssdk-html sample.

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ktryl
Contributor
Contributor

Hello, I know it may be late but is it still possible to get beta version of the HTML bridge? If not, what is the current planned release date for Web CLient SDK 5.5.1? Thank you.

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laurentsd
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

5.5u1 should be available in 3 weeks so it's better to wait for it at this point. Thanks.

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ktryl
Contributor
Contributor

Thank you sounds good.

I think you mentioned above you are going to present on HTML bridge at PEX on Wednesday, 2/14.  Looks like 2/14 is Friday and last day of the conference seems to be on Thursday. So I was wondering if your presentation was today or still will happen on Friday?

Thanks

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demo_111
Contributor
Contributor

Hi Laurentsd,

I am doing a project of Web Client Plugin. I need to load exit html pages on the web client package. Can i use HTML bridge to load exit html pages?

Do HTML bridge support at lease SDK 5.5.1?

Can you tell me when publish Web Client SDK 5.5.1 release?If it have published, please give me e download link.

I will thanks a lot.

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laurentsd
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

I don't know what you mean by "exit html pages" but with you can use HTML/Javascript instead of Flex for any SDK extension.

This will be available with SDK 5.5U1 that will GA in a couple of weeks.  It will be available for download here: VMware Horizon View Session Enhancement SDK - VMware Developer Center

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