HTML Applications (.HTA)

Have you ever heard of HTA files aka HTML Applications? If you not here is what you need to know about HTA:

  • HTA files look very similar to HTML files but when you save them you need to give them the .hta extension.
  • HTA understands everything the browser understands including HTML, Javascript and CSS code.
  • Microsoft described an HTA as running much like an .exe file.
  • HTAs will run from your system so they are not bound by security or privacy concerns that are found on the Internet.
  • Which means for example that HTA can be used to read and write on local text files using Javascript.
  • HTA will appear in a window that can be customised (Icon, toolbar…), so they look more like a Desktop application rather than a webpage.
  • HTA applications need the following tag in the <HEAD> section of the code:
scrollFlat="yes" />

Why should you try HTA applications when learning to code using JavaScript?

  • For all your HTML/Javascript projects where you need to bypass browser security restrictions such as accessing local text files.
  • If you want to create Desktop applications (rather than webpages). You can build them in HTML, CSS, Javascript but the application will look like a desktop application with its own window. It will not be displayed using the web browser.

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