Using the WebPageViewer Add-In For Business Central

Since the introduction of pages, and the deprecation of forms, we have had a fixed set of page types that we can create and a fixed set of controls that we can use on those pages. In the main, that’s a good thing. An appropriate control (text entry, date picker, checkbox etc.) is automatically used depending on the data type of the field, developers need to spend less time on the UI and the page can be automatically adapted to the web client, tablet and phone clients.

If we need finer control over how the page is laid out or want functionality that isn’t supported by the standard controls e.g. drag and drop then we can create a control-add in and use that in a usercontrol on the page instead.

This post isn’t an intro to creating custom control add-ins. There are already good posts out there and I don’t have loads of experience with them anyway.

There is a middle option to consider which might suit simple requirements. We can use the built in control add-ins, including the WebPageViewer.

Simply add a “Microsoft.Dynamics.Nav.Client.WebPageViewer” to the page. Every time I use it Microsoft have added some other capabilities to it – but the methods that we are interested in for now are Navigate and SetContent.

Pretty self-explanatory: Navigate allows you pass a URL that you want the viewer to navigate to. SetContent allows you to set some HTML content that you want to render in the viewer. I’m using this as a way to display a lot of read-only XML like this:

usercontrol(WebViewer; "Microsoft.Dynamics.Nav.Client.WebPageViewer")
{
    ApplicationArea = All;

    trigger ControlAddInReady(callbackUrl: Text)
    var
        TypeHelper: Codeunit "Type Helper";
        HtmlContentLbl: Label '<pre>%1</pre>', Comment = '%1 = message content';
    begin
        CurrPage.WebViewer.SetContent(StrSubstNo(HtmlContentLbl, TypeHelper.HtmlEncode(Content)));
    end;
}

but you can do whatever you want with it. Throw in some images and some JavaScript if you like. If you’re doing something complex you are probably better creating your own add-in but this could be the way to go for some simple requirements.

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