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Building a Crosswalk application

Crosswalk is a runtime for HTML5 applications. This means that any existing HTML5 applications should run on Crosswalk, providing they already run in a modern browser (Chrome, Firefox, Safari).

For the purposes of this tutorial, we use the simplest possible Crosswalk application: one HTML file.

However, because Crosswalk applications are intended to integrate well with the target environment, they require an additional file, manifest.json, containing metadata for that purpose. The manifest can be used to specify icons to use at different resolutions, set an app description, adjust content security policy settings, and otherwise configure how the app integrates with the target environment.

A simple application

  1. First, create a directory called xwalk-simple for the project:

    > mkdir xwalk-simple/
    > cd xwalk-simple/
  2. Next, copy an icon file to that directory, to serve as the application icon. You can use this icon:

    To use this example, right click on the image and select Save Image As... (or its equivalent in your browser). Save it into the xwalk-simple directory as icon.ico. (Note that this image is from the Crosswalk source code and is BSD licensed.)

    If you have your own favourite icon, copy that to the xwalk-simple directory instead. It should be 96 pixels square or larger.

  3. Create two text files inside xwalk-simple. (Create them using any text editor, such as Notepad.):

    • index.html

      This is a single HTML file which represents the user interface for the application. For the purposes of this tutorial, we are not using any CSS or JavaScript.

      The content should be:

      <!DOCTYPE html>
      <html>
        <head>
          <meta name="viewport"
                content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0">
          <meta charset="utf-8">
          <title>simple</title>
        </head>
        <body>
          <p>hello world</p>
        </body>
      </html>
    • manifest.json

      This contains the application metadata (see above).

      The content should be:

      {
        "name": "simple",
        "xwalk_package_id": "com.app.simple",
        "xwalk_version": "0.0.1",
        "start_url": "index.html",
        "icons": [
          {
            "src": "icon.ico",
            "sizes": "96x96",
            "type": "image/vnd.microsoft.icon",
            "density": "4.0"
          }
        ]
      }

      See the manifest documentation for more information.

  4. From inside the xwalk-simple directory, run:

    > crosswalk-pkg --platforms=windows .

    The crosswalk-pkg command above can be run from any location by putting the path to your project directory as the last parameter.

    This will download the Crosswalk libraries, package the application defined in the specified manifest.json file and produce an .msi (in our example com.app.simple-0.1.0.0.msi). The .msi is currently a 64-bit build of Crosswalk for Windows and will only run on 64-bit Windows. Once you've done this, you're ready to run the application on a target.