Re: launching executables through HTML files

Tony Sanders (
Sat, 19 Jun 1993 22:34:46 -0500

> command: the browser would fork off this (more or less trusted)
> application which could perform verification, testing of pathnames, or
> whatever before giving the user a dialog box that would allow the
> command to actually be launched. Would this be a widely applauded
> idea or should the browser just handle things itself (throw up the
> command in a dialog box and say, "OK buddy, yes or no?")?

I think you should be able to configure the browser as to what MIME types
it should handle and which get passed to an external program. Something
like the following (for X applications anyway):

XMosaic*contentTranslations: \
#override \n\
text/html: text_html() \n\
text/*: text_plain() \n\
image/gif: image_gif() \n\
image/jpg: image_jpg() \n\
image/*: exec(xv) \n\
video/mpg: exec(mpeg_play -loop) \n\
audio/*: exec(audio_play) \n\
exec/*: verify_exec() exec(exec_handler)\n\
*/*: unknown()

The #override means replace the translation table completely,
otherwise do a merge.

Can anyone see that having a URL "exec:..." is better than simply
groking "content-type: exec/*"? I think using content-type is
better because the "....:" part of a URL should specify how to
retrive the data, not what to do with it.