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Anyone ever made a Desktop App with Electron or tried it out?

TopSilver

Active Coder
Community Partner
Some of you may or may not know that you don't have to use C++, C, C#, or VB to make a desktop app. There are many other popular ways to do it. One of which is a javascript app by means of something called Electron. If you've never heard of Electron you need to look it up. It's something I've been interested in for a while.

Basically it involves html, css, and javascript. You use the html and css to build the front-end UI and then javascript for the functionality or back-end. The site for electron has a bunch of information on their library and how to use it. If you have minor experience with javascript it would be worth the fun in trying this out. Learning their library isn't as hard once you know js basics. The hard part is studying it. You just need to run it down and study it.

Here's all the documentation and the official electron site so you can get started on this next big project :D

 

Malcolm

Administrator
Administrator
Verified
They actually have a lot of popular apps that I use daily that were made using Electron e.g. (Skype, Github desktop etc).

Can anyone use it to build apps?
 

TopSilver

Active Coder
Community Partner
A popular desktop app using Electron that I can think of is Discord, which is pretty cool.
I had no idea discord used electron. So that's amazing and something new to learn. I know that Atom the text editor was made by Electron. That much I know but did not know discord was made by it. So thanks for sharing that info
 

NAAZANIQUA

New Coder
Electron is an open source project maintained by GitHub and an active community of contributors, it is a framework that allows you to build a native desktop app for Windows, Mac, and Linux while using web technologies such as HTML and CSS.
 

Ghost

Active Coder
Yes, I made a small application called Taski.
It lets you add checklist items to your single list, click the checklist item to toggle between complete / incomplete.
It's just a basic to-do list app, but is made with Eelectron. It uses local app storage to auto-save all your checklist items to the computer you are currently on!

 

Malcolm

Administrator
Administrator
Verified
Taski looks very cool. Something I’d probably use :D! I think when I get my butt moving I want to develop a similar check lists to help me practice.
 

Ghost

Active Coder
Thanks, it wasn't too difficult to make.
It's just some very basic HTML & JavaScript. I highly recommend (to everyone here) checking out Chrome browser extensions before making an Electron app. The code is pretty much identical because Electron apps run off of the Chrome browser software... when you export an Electron app, it exports Chrome so that it can run on anything. The issue with this is space - it takes up hundreds of MB... but yeah, if you want to learn Electron then make a mini browser extension because it's easier to get started, create, test and deploy. Then making an actual app will come much easier
 
D

Deleted member 205

Guest
I have heard of Electron but have never used it once.

I mean, it's great that it's an Open-Source Framework that can help new Programmers or Web-Developers who know JS make Cross-Platform Desktop-Software. But, one thing that I just don't like is the fact that the Software that you build with it, is done using HTML, CSS and JS. I'm not a big fan of Web-Development, I dislike HTML and CSS and I don't know a single thing about JS.

I think I'll just stick to the traditional Languages(C, C++ and Java) for making Software.

Another thing, is that it uses the Chromium Rendering-Engine. I've already cut-out Chrome, YouTube, Maps and Search. I just need to get rid of Android, GMail and my Account but the last thing I want is using a Framework that uses an Engine made by Google.
 

swift

Coder
I started to build an application to scratch my own itch. At work I use linux as my main development environment (which is great) but I've never found a decent application for database exploration that doesn't feel clunky or enterprise-y. When I look at the tooling available on OSX through the likes of SequelPro and TablePlus I feel like I'm missing out a little at work. So I decided to build a desktop database client.

I've never built an electron app and so I've been spending a bit of time exploring what is possible (and importantly how I can build and distribute). Now I've read up some more about these things, I'd say I'm making decent progress.

Here's a screenshot so far from my Mac (though I plan on changing the interface quite a bit since I'm quite inspired by VSCode right now :x3:)
1573986062937.png
 

Ghost

Active Coder
I've never built an electron app and so I've been spending a bit of time exploring what is possible (and importantly how I can build and distribute). Now I've read up some more about these things, I'd say I'm making decent progress.
I urge you to use extreme caution when sharing that app or distributing it. If you are allowing the program to connect to a specific database that you host on a server or your own computer, do not share the app. Electron can easily be taken apart and edited which would allow a user to view your database credentials. If you are using a server to "accept the SQL command" and return data to the app instead of allowing the app to directly access the database then that's a great start... Just make sure you put good security measures in place to prevent SQL injection and unwanted queries.
 

swift

Coder
Of course :thumbsup: However, the whole point of this app would be for *you* to put your own credentials and manage your own connections. So credential storage would all be on your local machine, no other server involved, just you and your database. Rather than this app connecting to any specific database of my own:)
 

Ghost

Active Coder
Of course :thumbsup: However, the whole point of this app would be for *you* to put your own credentials and manage your own connections. So credential storage would all be on your local machine, no other server involved, just you and your database. Rather than this app connecting to any specific database of my own:)
Good, good - Yeah I wasn't sure if you were developing it to handle your own connections or if anyone could put them in.
Is there a way to set the server so it's not localhost and instead can connect to a different server? I would personally use it to connect to external databases on different IP addresses & then just set up those servers to allow remote connections. Which brings me to my next point - will your program allow for secure connections with keys so a user can be verified for these type of remote connections to external databases? Or will this program only be used for local / offline databases?
 
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