Web Client vs. Native Client (Vision on Ignition Edge)

I was reviewing some of the Ignition documentation and training videos. I noticed there is an option to launch a client via a web page as opposed to using the client launcher. I'm running Edge and can only seem to see the native client launcher. Was this feature deprecated, or is it only available on Ignition SCADA?


Docs from this decade?

Perspective docs by mistake?

I can't recall the exact post. But the method the web launcher uses is deprecated. Only the client launcher should be used iirc

The 8.1 Manual documentation implies there is a "web-based" client:

Lastly, the Client training section shows this:

@Paul.Scott looks like there is some out of date content

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That IU screenshot shows version: 7.8.

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To answer the original question, references to “web launch” are referring to the deprecated Java Web Start technology that was superseded by native clients and removed entirely in Ignition 8 and Java 11.


Expanded a bit:

  • Ignition Edge, standard edition, and cloud edition can all run Perspective, or Vision. (Edge can run either, but not both simultaneously, the others can run both modules at once; Maker can only run Perspective).
  • Vision uses a technology called Java Swing, which used to be able to use something called Java Web Start/JNLP so that clicking a link would launch a new Java process using the Java installation already on your local machine. So it's not like it was "better" than the launchers - it's just trading one system installation for another; in some ways it's worse, because strict corporate IT really doesn't like to install a full programming language environment just for some one-off application.
    • Web Start was deprecated in Java 9 and removed entirely in Java 11.
    • There's an even older technology Vision used to support called Java Applets, where compliant web browsers would run a Java application directly in the browser frame, but it was a security nightmare and hasn't been available in a modern browser for a long time.
  • Perspective, meanwhile, is new since Ignition 8.0. It's got a totally different technology stack that is browser focused, meaning HTML, CSS, and Javascript. That means it can run everywhere [1] without the issues of Vision - true web launch clients, because a Perspective session is just another webpage to your web browser. However, the tradeoff for that flexibility is the tighter sandbox of browser security - you simply cannot do the things in Perspective you can do in Vision, like launch local executables, inspect the local system, etc.

As a further tangent, we've got plans to improve the launching experience for clients and designers when the launcher is installed to get closer to the JNLP user experience without relying on deprecated technologies or opening security holes.

  1. With a recent enough browser engine ↩︎