I have recently used some software, which come as a regular setup file, where you install your software, and then when you run it, opens the browser, uses the localhost with some specific port number to connect to the software, and runs it from there. I find it quite useful and interesting. But I even don't know whether this kind of software and programming methodology have a name or not. Therefore, I would like to learn which programming languages, APIs, and frameworks are specifically designed for this purpose?

One example to this is Metasploit. You can download its setup file, and install it casually like any other software, then when everything finishes, and you want to use the software. It will open the browser and connect to,


where Metasploit will load and start.

  • This looks like some self made http-server. You can do that rather easy with perl or python. What url did you see, on what operating system? – ott-- Jun 28 '13 at 9:57
  • @ott-- You know one example of the software that I'm talking about is Metasploit. If you download it now, you will get the setup file, then you will install it casually. And afterwards, it will open from your browser like: localhost:3790 where Metasploit will load and you are able to use it. – terett Jun 28 '13 at 10:08
  • This question appears to be off-topic because it is about using a loopback call to identify a service. However, this isn't a specific type of programming process. – user53019 Jun 28 '13 at 10:49
  • Start at en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_application_development – ott-- Jun 28 '13 at 11:01
  • I would simply say that software uses and/or runs a locally-hosted Web server. I would not logically categorize the behaviors of opening the browser and running a local server together as a single operation. – apsillers Jun 28 '13 at 17:23

Browser Based Software means HTML and CSS

The ability it view it locally during localhost is a nice convenience but it is not a significant factor. It's just a way to view it locally using a special address before transferring the file to a remote server and then viewing it over the internet.

This model - of having files show in a browser using localhost - also applies to development in any of the major development platforms - Java, PHP, Ruby on Rails, etc and the software tools and IDE's such as RubyMine. It will also apply to almost any software that is browser based.

If the software doesn't support viewing locally with localhost you can also just file -> open from the browser menu and see it locally that way.

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