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Server side HTML redering possible?

  • Silvio Bierman

    Silvio Bierman - 2007-02-19

    I just stumbled into this project and I am very interested. My company supplies a server based Java application that is operated through Internet browsers. We sometimes need to render HTML output in PDF format (users view the HTML in their browser and select "get PDF" to get the equivalent in a printable/storable format). To achieve that we use a Java HTML renderer that renders the HTML to a Graphics object that is implemented by IText and that generates the PDF.

    For several reasons we are not happy with the HTML rendering. The HTML looks perfect in both IE and Firefox/Mozilla but the Java HTML renderer gets a lot of stuff wrong, mainly because of lacking CSS2 support. The paging logic is very bad as well, causing images and even lines of text that are broken up across two subsequent pages.

    I need a pure server side component that renders HTML onto a Graphics object with paging support for A4 potrait/landscape paper formats. Since we currently only run on Linux and Windows environments Mozilla should be ideal...

    Will this work for me?

    Kind regards,

    Silvio Bierman

    • Ohad Serfaty

      Ohad Serfaty - 2007-02-20

      I am afraid that this is only a partial solution for your problem. All the parser is doing is take an html page and convert it into a java document object - the document itself is well-structured and browser quality , so there you will see improvement , however , if your renderer sucks and does not translate html docs to visual output than you will have a problem.

      Try using the javaXPCOM with mozilla's XULRunner. you can embed a firefox browser in your application and get some sort of a graphical object. It may be a very interesting solution for your problem.


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