Joachim Breitner

gtk-vector-screenshot works with epiphany

Published 2011-07-04 in sections English, Digital World.

Martin Borgert uses my gtk-vector-screenshot application to take screenshots of a web page opened in the browser, in his case, epiphany. I find this a very good idea and was surprised to hear that it works flawlessly: The rendered web page not only shows up, it even shows up as vector graphic with fully selectable text. It’s also neat that a HTML5 video appears.

One feature that is hard to replicate with regular screenshots is taking a shot of a window that is larger than the current screen. This PDF file (of which the image on the left is a thumbnail preview) contains a whole web page that would not fit on my screen. To achieve that you need a window manager that allows resizing windows beyond the size of your screen (e.g. xmonad). Then just keep resizing and moving the window until the scroll bar disappears and take the shot.

BTW, gtk-vector-screenshot is available in Debian unstable.


Wow, impressive!
#1 Np237 (Homepage) am 2011-07-05
Unfortunately, this function seems to be broken in Wheezy. While one can still take a vector screenshot from Epiphany, only the URL text field is taken as vector font. The actual page is pixelised. Maybe there was a rendering change between 2.91 or whatever I used in 2011 and now?
#2 W. Martin Borgert am 2014-01-13
Hmm, quite possible. I never touched it since then, didn’t even use it myself.

Maybe I should degrade my code to a proof-of-concept. A proper solution should be provided by gtk itself anyways.
#3 Joachim Breitner (Homepage) am 2014-01-13
My gut feeling is, that your code is fine, but there maybe was a change in either Epiphany (3.0.4 vs 3.4.2) or WebkitGTK-3 (1.4.2 vs 1.8.1) that broke it for web rendering in both wheezy and jessie. For other purposes than web pages and at least until there is a builtin in GTK, I consider your tool very useful!

Bad thing: We need vector screenshots for web pages urgently and I'm not aware of any tool to get them. Of course, we can stay with the pre-wheezy packages, but it's not optimal.
#4 W. Martin Borgert am 2014-01-13
Have you looked at wkhtmltopdf and similar tools`
#5 Joachim Breitner (Homepage) am 2014-01-13
Not precisely at wkhtmltopdf, but AFAIK the purpose of such tools is generating complete PDF documents from static online documentation. What we need is really screenshots of a running web application for inclusion in an end user manual. E.g. with partly filled text fields, visible URL etc. I fear, that such things are difficult to achieve with tools such as wkhtmltopdf. Anyway, the hint is very valuable, because at least for some graphics wkhtmltopdf will even be more suitable than gtk-vector-screenshot. Many thanks!
#6 W. Martin Borgert am 2014-01-15

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