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A desktop chat application built for fun using Electron and Firebase.

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ChatHub

Built using Electron.

Quick start

To develop on this application, simply clone and run the following commands:

npm install
npm start

That should start the application

Structure of the project

There are two package.json files:

1. For development

Sits on path: chathub/package.json. Here you declare dependencies for your development environment and build scripts. This file is not distributed with the application!

2. For the application

Sits on path: chathub/app/package.json. This is the actual manifest of your application. Declare app dependencies here.

Project's folders

  • app - code of your application goes here.
  • config - place where you can declare environment specific stuff for your app.
  • build - in this folder lands built, runnable application.
  • releases - ready for distribution installers will land here.
  • resources - resources needed for particular operating system.
  • tasks - build and development environment scripts.

Development

Installation

npm install

It will also download Electron runtime, and install dependencies for second package.json file inside app folder.

Starting the app

npm start

Adding npm modules to your app

Remember to add your dependency to app/package.json file, so do:

cd app
npm install name_of_npm_module --save

Including files to your project

The build script copies files from app to build directory and the application is started from build. Therefore if you want to use any special file/folder in your app make sure it will be copied via glob patterns in tasks/build/build.js:

var paths = {
    copyFromAppDir: [
        './node_modules/**',
        './vendor/**',
        './**/*.html',
        './**/*.+(jpg|png|svg)'
    ],
}

Making a release

Note: There are various icon and bitmap files in resources directory. Those are used in installers and are intended to be replaced by your own graphics.

To make ready for distribution installer use command:

npm run release

It will start the packaging process for operating system you are running this command on. Ready for distribution file will be outputted to releases directory.

You can create Windows installer only when running on Windows, the same is true for Linux and OSX. So to generate all three installers you need all three operating systems.

Mac only

App signing

The Mac release supports code signing. To sign the .app in the release image, include the certificate ID in the command as so,

npm run release -- --sign A123456789

Windows only

Installer

The installer is built using NSIS. You have to install NSIS version 3.0, and add its folder to PATH in Environment Variables, so it is reachable to scripts in this project. For example, C:\Program Files (x86)\NSIS.

32-bit build on 64-bit Windows

There are still a lot of 32-bit Windows installations in use. If you want to support those systems and have 64-bit OS make sure you've installed 32-bit (instead of 64-bit) Node version. There are versions managers if you feel the need for both architectures on the same machine.

License

The MIT License (MIT)

Copyright (c) 2015-2016 John Woodruff

Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:

The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.

THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE AUTHORS OR COPYRIGHT HOLDERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE, ARISING FROM, OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOFTWARE OR THE USE OR OTHER DEALINGS IN THE SOFTWARE.

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A desktop chat application built for fun using Electron and Firebase.

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