Using the Static Parser Browser


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Using the Static Parser Browser

When Content Grabber extracts data from a web page, it first loads the web page into a web browser. The web browser parses and renders the web page, and executes any JavaScript the page contains. This is a very safe approach, since Content Grabber uses an embedded version of Internet Explorer as it's web browser. Therefore if the target website is working in Internet Explorer, Content Grabber can usually extract data from the website. However, the approach is also slow and may cause instability.


If you have been using Internet Explorer to browse the web, you may have sometimes experienced problems, such as hanging websites or program crashes. This may occur very rarely (say once a year), so it may not be a problem during normal usage of Internet Explorer. When Content Grabber uses Internet Explorer to browse a website, it may access more web pages in a few hours than you access in a year, so stability issues are magnified significantly.


The main source of website instability is JavaScript. A website developer can use JavaScript to implement dynamic features on the website, but JavaScript bugs may lead to memory leaks, hanging websites or even program crashes.


All action commands in a Content Grabber agent, that open a new web browser, can be configured to open a specific type of web browser. The default browser is an embedded version of Internet Explorer, but you can change this to a Static Parser. The Static Parser does not use Internet Explorer at all, and it completely ignores JavaScript, so it's generally much more reliable.


JavaScript is always single threaded, so many operations cannot be performed simultaneously when using Internet Explorer web browsers. Since the Static Parser does not execute JavaScript, it can often process web pages much faster than an Internet Explorer web browser.


Many websites don't work properly if JavaScript is disabled, so the Static Parser will not work for all websites, but many websites can be partly processed with a Static Parser, so you should always switch to a Static Parser if a particular web page can be processed without JavaScript.



Configure an Action command to use a specific web

browser type


If you want an agent to use the Static Parser by default, then you can set the web browser type on the Agent Settings > Dynamic Browser > Static Parser: