JavaScript Preloader for Sprockets
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README.md

Sprockets::Preload

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Ever had heavy Javascript assets that were taking a while to download? Sprockets::Preload allows you to preload it using only the directives of Sprockets.

Show your users nice loading bar instead of just white loading screen!

Usage

Imagine that you are riding on Rails and have the following application.js where jquery, jquery-ui and front (MVC front-end application) take around 500kb compressed altogether:

//= include helpers
//= include jquery
//= include jquery-ui
//= include front

$(function(){
  // Starting application
  Front.start();
});

Let's make user experience smooth:

  1. Add sprockets-preload to your Gemfile and run bundle install

  2. Change //= include to //= preload for the assets you want to detach:

    //= include helpers
    //= preload jquery
    //= preload jquery-ui
    //= preload front
    
    $(function(){
      // Starting application
      Front.start();
    });
  3. Delay initialization to the moment when detached assets are loaded:

    //= include helpers
    //= preload jquery
    //= preload jquery-ui
    //= preload front
    
    SprocketsPreload.success = function() {
      // Starting application
      Front.start();
    }
  4. Track loading and show progress to user

    //= include helpers
    //= preload jquery
    //= preload jquery-ui
    //= preload front
    
    SprocketsPreload.success = function() {
      // Starting application
      Front.start();
    }
    
    SprocketsPreload.progress = function(percent) {
      // User isn't going to see percents at console
      // but that's just an example after all
      console.log(percent);
    }
  5. IMPORTANT: Rails development environment uses stub to ease debugging. Thus while things keep working, assets don't really get detached. To force production-grade loading (just to make sure things work fine) add //= preload! to your manifest:

    //= preload!
    //= include helpers
    //= preload jquery
    //= preload jquery-ui
    //= preload front
    
    SprocketsPreload.success = function() {
      // Starting application
      Front.start();
    }
    
    SprocketsPreload.progress = function(percent) {
      // User isn't going to see percents at console
      // but that's just an example after all
      console.log(percent);
    }

    Make sure to remove //= preload! when your tests are done.


By the way, there's also //= preload_tree directive that works similar to //= require_tree.

Caching options

To make loading progress tracking smooth and cache manually controllable, Sprockets::Preload uses localStorage to cache assets (it falls back to default browser cache automatically). Sprockets provides digests and logic-aware dependency system that work much better and much more predictable than more common default HTTP caching.

That's said – you really want to keep localStorage strategy in the vast majority of cases. If however for some reason you still want to make it use default browser cache, set SprocketsPreload.localStorage to false like this:

//= preload!
//= include helpers
//= preload jquery
//= preload jquery-ui
//= preload front

SprocketsPreload.localStorage = false;

SprocketsPreload.success = function() {
  // Starting application
  Front.start();
}

SprocketsPreload.progress = function(percent) {
  // User isn't going to see percents at console
  // but that's just an example after all
  console.log(percent);
}

Note that default caching strategy will still try to emulate loading progress tracking but it works MUCH worse.

Compatibility

Sprockets::Preload does not depend on Rails. However it has proper rail-ties and is fully-functional on Rails out of box. If you want to use it outside of Rails with clean Sprockets – see lib/sprockets/preload/engine.rb for required initialization settings.

History

Sprockets::Preload is a mutated fork of Joosy 1.x preloaders. For Node.js-based applications please refer to Loada.

Maintainers

License

It is free software, and may be redistributed under the terms of MIT license.

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