What is XULRunner

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Revision as of 15:37, 13 December 2006 by Mylau (talk | contribs)
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XULRunner is a Mozilla runtime package that can be used to bootstrap XUL+XPCOM applications that are as rich as Firefox and Thunderbird. It is similar to other existing runtime applications such as J2SE Java Runtime Environment (JRE). It enriches desktop application with an innovative integration concept and allows developers to write desktop application.

This runtime package provides a way for installing, upgrading, and uninstalling XULRunner applications. XULRunner will also provide libxul, a solution which allows the embedding of Mozilla technologies in other projects and products. These applications can be written in any supported technologies by Mozilla web platform. Some of these technologies are the following:

  • HTML
  • SVG
  • XUL

XULRunner application is an alternative to avoid the use of Firefox. The following are the trade offs of using a XULRunner application:


  • Runs on its own independent process
  • Does not require Firefox to run
  • Markup based UI (like XAML)
  • Allows applications to be cross platform


  • Auto-update code would need to be written
  • Installation files are larger to download when including XULRunner binaries (+13MB)

Note: The listed pros and cons are not all the trade offs of using XULRunner. Instead these are the trade offs of using XULRunner application as oppose to Firefox.