TerraExplorer add-ons allow external developers to:
- Add custom HTML tools to TerraExplorer
- Customize the ribbon by adding new ribbon commands that activate the new tools or by removing ribbon commands
- Customize the user interface by changing the Start page and configuring Start settings
To add a tool to the TerraExplorer application, create an XML file named “tool.xml” that defines the tool and its location on the ribbon, and then save it in a folder placed under the tool's folder.
The XML document must be contained within <Tool>…</Tool> opening and closing tags. Using the <Tool> tag’s attributes and child elements, you can configure the tool through definition of the following parameters:
- Tool Path
- Tool’s User Interface
- Tool Settings
- Ribbon Customization
More about: Creating add-ons >
To create an add-on:
- Create an XML file and name it Tool.xml.
- Add the script: <Tool caption="My Tool" id="MT001" Path="MyTool\MyTool.html" NeedProject="1"> <!-- The NeedProject attribute enables the button only after a project was loaded. --> <Icon path="Snapshot.ico"/> <Panel id="Create0000" caption="My Caption"/> <ToolTip title="MyTooltip" description="Description..." /> </Tool>
To distribute a new tool to TerraExplorer users, the actual tool as well as the tool’s .xml (defining the tool and the location of the new tool on the ribbon) must be zipped into a TEZ zip file. The TEZ mechanism offers an easy way for third party developers to distribute TerraExplorer add-ons to users. More about: Distributing add-ons >
If a TEZ named setup.tez is placed next to the TerraExplorer installation file during installation, it will automatically be installed. If you want multiple add-ons to be automatically installed, use TerraExplorer's Make TEZ tool (Tools > Create > Make TEZ) to combine a number of TEZ files into a single TEZ.
To prepare your add-on for distribution:
- Create a tool folder (e.g., MyTool), and copy into this folder the HTML tool and the corresponding tool.xml.
- Zip the tool folder.
- Change the file extension to *.TEZ (e.g., MyTool.TEZ).
Note: The TEZ can be added to any TerraExplorer on a machine simply by double-clicking the *.TEZ file on the same machine. If TerraExplorer was open, it must be closed and reopened to see the changes. Once a TEZ is installed, the files are saved to a predefined “Skyline\TerraExplorer” folder in the “Application Data” space of the current user. More about: Distributing tools >
After installing this sample TEZ, the MyTool tool packaged in the TEZ will be available from TerraExplorer's Tools tab.
TEZ's can be signed using the TEZ Creator tool included with TerraExplorer. This option enables files to be verified on installation, to ensure there was no tampering, and is strongly recommended as a means of turning your TEZ into a trusted file (and avoiding the display of a warning when a user installs the TEZ).