[webkit-gtk] Announcing WebKitGTK+ 1.4

Martin Robinson mrobinson at webkit.org
Thu Jun 30 17:00:25 PDT 2011

After more than a year of work we are excited to announce the new 1.4
stable series of WebKitGTK+ with the release of WebKitGTK+ 1.4.2.

sha256sum: 3eb0fe06a99878a32f18a77cdaaf5a33ce2af36ee33c251ae14f4e4b3fa57f88
md5sum: 10c969db3b5484c71df1aa9a338377ff

Or directly from the SVN repository:


Future maintenance releases of the stable branch will be made from our
1.4 branch, which is accesible from:


What is WebKitGTK+?

WebKitGTK+ is the GNOME platform port of the WebKit rendering engine.
Offering WebKit's full functionality through a set of GObject-based
APIs, it is suitable for projects requiring any kind of web
integration, from hybrid HTML/CSS applications to full-fledged web


libsoup >= 2.33.6
cairo >= 1.6
fontconfig >= 2.4
Freetype2 >= 9.0
libxml >= 2.6

Depending on your configuration options WebKitGTK+ may also depend on:

libxslt >=1.1.7
sqlite >= 3.0
gstreamer >= 0.10
gstreamer-plugin-base >= 0.10.25
enchant >= 0.22

What's new in the WebKitGTK+ 1.4 series

WebKitGTK+ 1.4.x is the first stable series since our 1.2.0 series.
While we have maintained API compatibility, we have broken ABI
compatibility by renaming the library from libwebkit to libwebkitgtk

- GTK+ 3.x support
    WebKitGTK+ now supports the latest 3.x series of GTK+ releases, which
    bring better performance and a saner theming backend. GTK+ 3.x support is a
    foundational aspect of GNOME 3 support. We also offer support for both
    GTK+ 2.x and GTK+ 3.x, with GTK+2.x as the default. Since there are some
    subtle differences in how both versions are installed, here's a brief

    GTK+ 2.x:
    - API version: 1.0 (compatible with 1.2.0)
    - pkg-config name: 'webkit' (compatible with 1.2.0)
    - minimum GTK+ version required: 2.10 (compatible with 1.2.0)

    GTK+ 3.x:
    - API version: 3.0 (different than 1.2.0, but we maintain API compatibility)
    - pkg-config name: 'webkitgtk' (different than 1.2.0, but we maintain API
    - minimum GTK+ version required: 3.0

- GObject DOM bindings
    Traditionally accessing the DOM in WebKitGTK+ required using the  JSC APIs,
    which are very verbose and unfriendly to users of GObject  introspection.
    The GObject bindings allow code in the user-agent to interact with page
    DOM, enabling deep interation between web and native content.

- GTK+ key themes
    Users of the Emacs key theme should be overjoyed to learn that text  input
    fields in WebKitGTK+ now work like native GTK+ text input fields.

- File reader / writer APIs
    The richness of the web platform accelerates daily, and support for file
    reader and writer APIs mean that WebKitGTK+ continues to be a relevent
    consumer of modern web applications.

- HTML5 range and number widget support
    HTML5 includes a host of new widgets. In particular in the 1.4.x series,
    WebKitGTK+ now has full support for two types in particular: range and
    number. <input type="range"> widget is presented as a GtkRange while
    <input type="number"> is presented as a GtkSpinButton.

- WebSockets support
    WebKitGTK+ now supports two way communication via WebSockets, an exciting
    new way for web applications to intract with the server.

- Add support for HTTP disk caching via libsoup
    With the addition of support in libsoup, WebKitGTK+ now allows for disk
    caching of network resources.

- Added APIs to handle plugin management
    User agents can expose information about plugins that WebKitGTK+ has found
    as well as support for dynamically enabling and disabling them.

- Better font-face support
    While WebKiGTK+ already had support for web fonts, they now work reliably
    and also packaged in the WOFF file format.

- WebGL support
    Though disabled by default for now, it's possible to build  WebKitGTK+ with
    support for WebGL allowing access to 3D web applications.

- Clipboard and drag and drop support
    WebKitGTK+ now fully support DOM copy-and-paste and drag-and-drop events.

- Accessibility improvements
    The tireless work of Mario Sanchez Prada and Joanmarie Diggs have made
    WebKitGTK+ even more inclusive.

- HTML5 media player supports fullscreen mode
    Along with many other improvements to the HTML5 media support, videos can
    now be made fullscreen.

- Faster CSS shadows
    CSS shadows have gone from cripplingly slow to quite speedy on many pages.

- And many more
    This list sadly omits many other incredible improvements from dozens of
    volunteers through the months of the 1.3.x development series. The
    library now passes more than 20 thousand tests, which means a better user
    experiences and less regressions. For a complete list of changes in the
    1.3.x series, please check out our code repository.

More information

If you want to know more about the project or get in touch with its
developers you can:

- Visit our website at http://www.webkitgtk.org, or the upstream main
 page at http://www.webkit.org. People interested in contributing should read

- Browse the bug list at http://bugs.webkit.org, WebKitGTK+ bugs are typically
  prefixed by "[GTK]." A bug report with a minimal, reproducible test case
  is often just as valuable as a patch.

- Join the #webkit and #webkit-gtk IRC channels at irc.freenode.net.

- Subscribe to the webkit-gtk mailing list,
 http://lists.webkit.org/mailman/listinfo.cgi/webkit-gtk, or the
 webkit's general development mailing list,


Thanks to all the contributors who made possible this release, they
are far too many to list!

The WebKitGTK+ team,
June 30, 2011

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