content/worker

Unstable

Used in the internal implementation of SDK modules which use content scripts to interact with web content.

It exports the Worker trait, which enables content scripts and the add-on code to exchange messages using the port or postMessage APIs.

The Worker is similar to the web worker interface defined by the W3C. But unlike "web workers," these workers run in the same process as web content and browser chrome, so code within workers can block the UI.

Globals

Constructors

Worker(options)

Creates a content worker.

Parameters

options : object
Required options:

Name Type  
window object

The content window to create JavaScript sandbox for communication with.

Optional options:

Name Type  
contentScriptFile string,array

The local file URLs of content scripts to load. Content scripts specified by this option are loaded before those specified by the contentScript option. Optional.

contentScript string,array

The texts of content scripts to load. Content scripts specified by this option are loaded after those specified by the contentScriptFile option. Optional.

onMessage function

Functions that will registered as a listener to a 'message' events.

onError function

Functions that will registered as a listener to an 'error' events.

Worker

Worker is composed from the EventEmitter trait, therefore instances of Worker and their descendants expose all the public properties exposed by EventEmitter along with additional public properties that are listed below.

Example

var workers = require("sdk/content/worker");
let worker =  workers.Worker({
  window: require("sdk/window/utils").getMostRecentBrowserWindow(),
  contentScript:
    "self.port.on('hello', function(name) { " +
    "  self.port.emit('response', window.location.href); " +
    "});"
});
worker.port.emit("hello", { name: "worker"});
worker.port.on("response", function (location) {
  console.log(location);
});

Methods

postMessage(data)

Asynchronously emits "message" events in the enclosed worker, where content script was loaded.

Parameters

data : number,string,JSON
The data to send. Must be stringifiable to JSON.

destroy()

Destroy the worker by removing the content script from the page and removing all registered listeners. A detach event is fired just before removal.

Properties

port

Object that allows you to:

  • send customized messages to the worker using the port.emit function
  • receive events from the worker using the port.on function

url

The URL of the content.

tab

If this worker is attached to a content document, returns the related tab.

Events

message

This event allows the content worker to receive messages from its associated content scripts. Calling the self.postMessage() function from a content script will asynchronously emit the message event on the corresponding worker.

Arguments

value : The event listener is passed the message, which must be a JSON-serializable value.

error

This event allows the content worker to react to an uncaught runtime script error that occurs in one of the content scripts.

Arguments

Error : The event listener is passed a single argument which is an Error object.

detach

This event is emitted when the document associated with this worker is unloaded or the worker's destroy() method is called.

Note that you can't communicate with the content script in response to this event. If you try, you'll see this error:

Error: Couldn't find the worker to receive this message.
The script may not be initialized yet, or may already have been unloaded

You can handle the detach event in the content script itself though:

// in content script
self.on("detach", function() {
  window.close();
});

Document Tags and Contributors

Contributors to this page: wbamberg
Last updated by: wbamberg,