The best way to learn how to code is by practicing and studying the work of others. GitHub makes this simple enough for any programming language you can imagine. But, for multi-language projects such as Chrome extensions, you won’t find as many resources.
That’s where the CRX Extractor can help. It’s a free web app that can pull any source code dynamically, straight from a Chrome browser extension.
Best of all, you don’t even need the plugin installed! Just copy/paste the extension URL straight from the Chrome Web Store and let it run. Alternatively, you can download a
.crx file and upload that directly to the site.
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If you click the “Get started” button and nothing happens, try disabling your ad blocker.
A lot goes on behind the scenes to get this app working smoothly. It’s possible to get the code yourself but it’ll take a lot more work.
The CRX Extractor pulls metadata associated with the file and changes the extension into a
.zip archive. This way you can browse through the archive just like a typical
The entire process is very technical which is why most developers don’t want to deal with it. You can learn more on the About page if you’d like to dive into the techie side.
And, as you might expect with any great web app, the entire project is open-sourced and freely available on GitHub.
You should use this web app mostly to learn how Chrome extensions are built and what keeps them safe. Browse through Google’s Getting Started guide to learn more about creating extensions from scratch.
But, nothing beats the experience of digging into the source code to learn how pros craft their extensions. With CRX Extractor, you’ll have a much easier time getting into that source code to study, learn, and replicate from the best developers out there.
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