Clientside executables e.g. Forms from webpages

Customers will always come up with requirements that will make your head spin.
Some of our applications are of course Oracle APEX based, but there are still some
old client-side applications like Oracle Forms [yes, the ancient client-server version].

We created a web-based intranet with an application overview. With one click on the application the -web- application would start.

Of course they wanted to start the old Oracle Forms from this portal as well and it should work in all the main browsers.

First of all, all client machines are Windows (XP and 7)

Secondly, we were able to deploy a registry setting on all clients.

With the registry settings we defined a custom protocol

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\edwin]
"URL Protocol"=""
@="URL:edwin Protocol"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\edwin\shell]

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\edwin\shell\open]

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\edwin\shell\open\command]
@="\"X:\\PROGS\\EdwinProtocol\\dispatcher.exe\" \"%1\""

The X-drive is a network drive that is available to all clients.

The dispatcher.exe is a fairly simple custom-made executable that
receives an argument, matches the argument in a configuration-file to an executable
and then starts that executable.

E.g. our configuration file looks like this

[PROTOCOL]
NAME=edwin://

[FORMA]
EXE=X:\Appl\Oracle8_clientT\BIN\ifrun60.EXE XXX00.fmx
WORKING_DIR=X:\progs\XXX\Produktion

With all this in place, starting up an executable from our intranet is as easy as creating a hyperlink with our custom protocol

edwin://FORMA

As always, that’s it.