Adding Protocol Schemes to Chromium

Previously, I’ve written a lot about Application Protocols, which are a simple and popular common mechanism for browsers to send a short string of data out to an external application for handling. For instance, mailto is a common example of a scheme treated as an Application Protocol; if you invoke mailto:someone@somewhere.com, the browser will convertContinue reading “Adding Protocol Schemes to Chromium”

Debugging Compatibility in Edge

Background By moving from our old codebase to Chromium, the Microsoft Edge team significantly modernized our codebase and improved our compatibility with websites. As we now share the vast majority of our web platform code with the market-leading browser, it’s rare to find websites that behave differently in Edge when compared to Chrome, Brave, Opera,Continue reading “Debugging Compatibility in Edge”

Recognizing Edge Windows

Yesterday, we had a customer reach out to us for help on an issue they’d encountered while writing code to interact with Microsoft Edge windows. Their script enumerated every window in the system, looking for those with Microsoft Edge in the titlebar. They were surprised to discover that the script didn’t recognize any of theirContinue reading “Recognizing Edge Windows”

Trim Your Whitespace

Leading and trailing whitespace are generally invisible. Humans are bad at dealing with things they can’t see. If your system accepts textual codes, or any other human-generated or human-mediated input, you should trim whitespace, whether it’s leading, trailing, or inline (if not meaningful). // Trim leading and trailing whitespace $(‘inputCode’).value = $(‘inputCode’).value.trim(); It’s downright sillyContinue reading “Trim Your Whitespace”

Debug Native Messaging

Prelude Last month, an Enterprise customer reached out to report that a 3rd-party browser extension they use wasn’t working properly. Investigation of the extension revealed that the browser extension relied upon a NativeMessaging Host (NMH) companion that runs outside of the browser’s sandbox. In reviewing a Process Monitor log provided by the customer, the SupportContinue reading “Debug Native Messaging”

Lock down web browsing using Kiosk Mode

Browsers get used in many different environments. Today, I take a look at scenarios where there’s either no interactive user (digital signage) or a potentially malicious user (internet kiosks). Digital Signage (fullscreen) Requirements In the Digital Signage scenario, there’s a full-screen webpage rendering and there are no user-accessible input devices– the canonical example here wouldContinue reading “Lock down web browsing using Kiosk Mode”

Edge Command Line Arguments

Microsoft Edge offers broad variety of configuration options via Group Policy (for Enterprises), the edge://settings page, the edge://flags page (mostly experimental options), and finally via command-line arguments that are passed to the msedge.exe executable. This list of sources is roughly in order of stability and supportability– earlier choices change less often (and with more notice)Continue reading “Edge Command Line Arguments”

Microsoft Edge’s Many Processes

Chromium-based browsers like Microsoft Edge use a multi-process architecture for reliability and security reasons. tl;dr For reliability, Process isolation means that if one process crashes, the entire browser need not go down. For example, if a page on leaky.com has a memory leak that’s so bad that its tab crashes with an out-of-memory error, yourContinue reading “Microsoft Edge’s Many Processes”