Browsing the web – AmiFox

Posted by ALB42 on 12. Februar 20235 Comments

Again got some ideas from Michal Bergseth (Amix , Amitopia) what to implement for Amiga. Basically it is the same idea as for AmiTube. Do something, the Amiga is too slow for, on the server and only sent the result to Amiga. This time it’s webpages… the usual webrowsers are either rather old and do not support CSS (like AWeb, Voyager), newer but still do not support CSS (iBrowse) or newer support CSS but are very slow (Netsurf).

I started with „CutyCapt“ to make a simple docker container which can load a webpage and make a screenshot. But with that you only get a screen shot nothing more. No idea how to navigate. My second try was to also load the actual HTML and parse for links. This is rather easy using the THTMLDocument class for Free Pascal but this gives you just the links and nothing more, so I put just a list under the image. This was not really a good solution.

Then I noticed when you let CutyCapt print the webpage as PDF, then the PDF contains all the links with position information. Therefore I wrote a PDF parser to get the links and position from the PDF and create a map for the image. Which worked reasonable good, but not very fast (printing is rather slow, also the transfer from PDF to PNGs is slow). But it was good enough for a first test version:

This was the first time it came a bit to public and wide audience attention. So I got some more hints that such systems already exists, some very good and some rather poor, I tried a lot of them and none really satisfied my needs. Some like wkhtml are very fast and do not need an X-Server in the docker, which is nice, but has a lot of problems with some webpages (, image are VERY low resolution, all images are missing and so on).

The best I found is definitely WRP – Web Rendering Proxy which is very fast already has a lot of settings build in, it is already nicely usable in your IBrowse if you like. But there is a big BUT it is single user only, so not suitable for a public service like AmiTube is, and which is the ultimate goal.

So an other Member of the AmiTube Discord Channel (going by the name McDope) will try to create a server with this WRP which can be used by some more users. I meanwhile make a little app, which feels like a real Webbrowser but is in fact just an interface to the WRP. It solves also the problem that you cannot type in anything into any forms like search engines or so. Kinda. A little video to demonstrate.

5 comments to "Browsing the web – AmiFox"

  1. It is so much fun to be able using new tech with old tech. Browsing the web with SSL on an old Amiga in 2023. Nice project !

  2. Salvatore Abbate sagt:

    Nice Job Thank You ALBS!

  3. Salvatore Abbate sagt:

    There will not be a version for aros it would be great to have it especially that you are working on x64v11 natively already some of your programs can be used, thanks!


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