XULRunner Wishlist

XULRunner provides a lot of core functionality, but if you’re writing an application that is not a web browser or email client, you might feel some pieces are missing or not supported as well as they could. You may even have a list. Here’s mine:

  • Interprocess Communication (bug 68702)
  • Window transparency on all platforms (bug 307204)
  • Hiding the main window menu on Macs
  • Adding application to the system tray or appropriate location for other platforms (bug 325353)
  • Allow extensions to be associated with the runtime and not only with applications (bug 299716)
  • XUL Templates based on XML or SQL (bug 321171 and bug 321172)

These features are not critical “must haves” in order to build a good desktop application. Some of them just make it easier. Others are nice to have in the toolkit and not in patches or code that results in a custom build of XULRunner.

While I’m at it, here’s a list of developer “features” I’d like to see:

  • Simple (not perl scripts) tool for MAR file generation so applications can upgrade themselves
  • Tools to generate scaffolding for new application projects
  • Venkman (or other debugger) added to the runtime so applications can be debugged easily (sort of bug 342590)
  • DOM and Event libraries for XUL
  • Packager to “build” applications from XUL & JS

Feel free to share yours. The Mozpad group is working on a list too.

6 thoughts on “XULRunner Wishlist

  1. Nice list. I’d add to it a few things under the general heading of “widgets that could be useful in a desktop app”:

    * Date and time selectors (coming with XULRunner 1.9, I believe)
    * Restricted input fields (only numbers, only hexadecimal, matching a regex, etc.)
    * Colour picker
    * Font selector

    One of the nice things about XUL is that it’s fairly easy to throw a working UI together to get a feel for the application before worrying too much about the code behind it. With some richer and more powerful widgets that first pass at the UI could be even better.

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