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Programming ColdFusion by Rob Brooks-Bilson

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Form Controls in Version 5.0

Version 5.0 of ColdFusion introduces a number of significant architectural, behavioral, functional, and cosmetic changes to the various CFFORM controls. The most significant change has to do with the architecture of the controls themselves. Different versions of different web browsers each have a different Java Runtime Environment (JRE), making it impossible to guarantee that the pre-CF 5.0 applets will run as intended on all browser version/JRE combinations. Because of this, all the Java applet-based CFFORM controls (CFTEXTINPUT, CFGRID, CFSLIDER, and CFTREE) were rewritten for ColdFusion 5.0. The new versions of the controls require the Sun Java web browser plugin, which allows the applets to function across the widest possible spectrum of browsers. When a user requests a page containing any of the new applet controls, ColdFusion automatically attempts to send and install the Java plugin if it isn’t already present on the user’s system. Depending on what browser the user has and the version they are running, installation can be completely seamless, or it can require a few additional steps on the part of the user.

The requirement that users download and install a plugin in order to use Java based CFFORM controls is worth considering when designing your applications. While this may not be a concern for intranet applications, where a company may have strict control over what software users have installed, it may present a barrier to Internet/extranet ...

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