Xplug v1.2 is available

There is a new version of Xplug available for download in the Google Chrome Webstore and Firefox add-ons store.

Xplug v1.2 Page Designer configuration dialog
Xplug v1.2 Page Designer configuration dialog

Xplug 1.2 is the biggest change I’ve done to the Xplug browser plugin since its initial release back in October. Working on the new stuff was fun, but it was also really hard work.

There are tons of changes in the code and I’m now using Gulp.js as the javascript build-system. (I have a Gulp task that does JShint checking + concatenating all files and copying it to the destination directories).

So what to expect? The biggest change and the one I’m rather proud of, is the possibility to switch between multiple Page Designer styles or create your own, using a configuration dialog.

Ofcourse you can also export or import existing styles (JSON format).

For me personally, what I enjoyed most was working on the style configuration dialog. I used the property editor API to create the dialog, so it looks and behaves as you’d expect from Page Designer.

I’m really very impressed with what the APEX developer team has done. In that area I expect more impressive stuff to come in the next APEX releases.

I’m planning on doing some blog posts on what I learned so far.
In the meantime, if you want to take a look, the Xplug source code is available at GitHub:


Note that for the biggest part I’m using the browser addon infrastructure only for injecting javascript source code into the Page Designer page. So there’s no browser specific calls in the /source directory.

As there were many code changes in Xplug. it can happen that some things don’t work as you’d expect. Please report any issues using the GitHub issue tracker.

Also if you use and like Xplug, please let me know. It’s always nice getting some feedback on the work you’ve done.

Oh, on a sidenote and what kinda suprises me: when looking at the plugin download and usage statistics, it seems that Firefox is king in APEX developer land.

  • Firefox: 385 downloads since October 15th (~51 users a day)
  • Chrome: 90 downloads since October 12th

That’s weird because I’d expect most people to have switched to Google Chrome by now.

Personally I use Google Chrome for developing Xplug because it’s fast and plugin development is also a lot easier than with Firefox.
(Have to admit that I still use Firefox (with Firebug) at the shop, but I do am planning to switch to Chrome there as well).
What really annoyed me, is that it’s 2016 and in FF you still can’t style scrollbars with CSS… Go figure!

For kicks, here are some Xplug Style files to import:

It’s important to know that all Xplug settings are stored in the browser directly (localStorage).
Xplug currently does not communicate with any server component. So, if you do plan on building your own styles,
please save them locally by using the export function.

I still have a couple of things planned for Xplug. For one I’d like to create a real Gallery, perhaps an APEX application where people can upload their own styles which can then be directly imported using Xplug. We’ll see how that goes. Also have to work on the documentation and describe where in PD the selected colors are used. (Best shot for now is to look at the generated CSS file in the browser).

More stuff I can think about for a future Xplug version:

  • Page advisor in javascript: Wouldn’t it be nice that if you work on a page in Page Designer, a  page check is continuously / immediately done in a non-intrusive way in the background.
  • For fun: Use your Mobile Phone as a second screen.
    See statistics/score on the pages/applications you worked on, …

Anyway, for now here are a couple more screenshots of Xplug v1.2:

Xplug v1.2 Page Designer Styles Gallery
Xplug v1.2 Page Designer Styles Gallery
Xplug v1.2 Page Designer (red style)
Xplug v1.2 Page Designer (red style)
Xplug v1.2 Pick Style
Xplug v1.2 Pick Style


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