Do you use some websites very often? Having a native app for them on your computer can really make them more accessible. Imagine you do not have to go to your browser and then look for the tab that has your website opened. In this post, we’ve covered a command line tool called Nativefier that lets you create native applications for any web-app or webpage. We’ve also covered the steps that you can follow to create a native application for any of your favorite web pages.
How to create native applications
1. Open a CMD window in the desired directory.
2. Execute the following command to install Nativefier.
npm install -g nativefier
3. Once the installation is complete, you can execute the following command to create a native application for any webpage or web-app.
nativefier --name “Application Name” “http://applicationurl.com”
This should create an application named Application Name whose URL is http://applicationurl.com. Now you can open the folder created by Nativefier and locate the executable for your application. You can create shortcuts to this exe file so that you can directly launch it from the start menu, taskbar or any other place of your choice.
If your chosen website requires flash support, you can easily add it by adding a –flash tag in the installation command. The command would become:
nativefier --name --flash “Application Name” “http://applicationurl.com”
For flash to work, Google Chrome is required, or you need to install the PepperFlash Chrome Plugin manually.
Since these applications are nothing but a WebView wrapped around your desired URL. You can perform some basic operations that you could have done on a normal web browser. To do so, you can access the application menu by pressing ‘Alt’ key from your keyboard. Now using these menus, you can navigate forward or backward or reload the entire application.
Like most of the web-browsers, you can easily zoom in using Ctrl+= and zoom out using Ctrl+-. There is even an option to toggle full-screen mode. The best part about Nativefier generated applications is that they come with full-fledged Chrome-like developer tools. You get access to console, network and all other features that are offered Chrome Developer Tools. You can enable/disable developer tools by hitting Ctrl+Shift+I.
As mentioned the applications can preserve some minimal configuration, and this can be cleared by going to the application menu and then select Edit and then Clear App Data. This should completely reset the application with all the sessions or logins that you might have maintained.
All the applications generated using Nativefier are portable. You can easily carry them around with all their configuration. This makes sure you have your data everywhere and prevents you from logging again and again.
Nativefier is a great tool to have in your collection. If you use any website so frequently that you feel like having a native application for that, you must give Nativefier a try. The applications generated are simple, fast and reliable. Also using your favorite web apps in a dedicated native window is a great experience in total. I’ve used Nativefier to create native applications for most of the Social Networks, GitHub and various other web apps. Click here to know more about Nativefier.