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IE6 problems with Flash and Gzipped XML

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Hey all,

This is a repost of my entry back in 2007 since I'm slowly moving all my posts over to here. This does seem a bit cheesy but I might as well throw it in here since blogspot is my blogging home now.

Problem Analysis

While doing some front-end performance enhancements on a project that utilized extensive javascript and flash, I found that IE6 doesn't like it when you compress text/xml with mod_deflate/mod_gzip. From a user perspective, the Flash component would show, but any XML data being transferred to the Flash component will be rejected--you get a blank canvas/UI without any data/Preloader will show. Incidentally, Internet Explorer 7, Firefox 2+, Safari all handle gzipped text/xml without a problem.

Final Solution


Only apply gzip to the following content types: text/plain, text/html, text/javascript, and text/css--Do not apply it to text/xml if your Flash components use XML data sets from the back-end.

This solution gzips all your assets (Javascript and CSS), without breaking Flash components in your web application.

Further Reading

mod_deflate
tutorial - http://www.howtoforge.com/apache2_mod_deflate


Cheers,
Jaime

Jaime Bueza is a software developer in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. He has developed web applications for Nintendo, Electronic Arts, Ritchie Brothers, Kiwi Collections, and Cox Communications. When he's not developing useful software that constantly evolves with business requirements, he's creating tutorial videos for aspiring front-end developers.
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