Thank you Carl for the excellent write-up.  It could serve as a visualization 
plugin tutorial.
However, I am still not able to get the visualization icon to appear, see the 
attachment 2.  
I feel if I get the icon to show it will all come together.
A couple questions followed by file dumps and startup info
1. my   /api/datatypes/mapping dump   it shows registry instead of binary
near the top
"galaxy.datatypes.genetics.RexpBase": {"galaxy.datatypes.images.Html": true, 
"": true, "": true, 
"galaxy.datatypes.genetics.RexpBase": true}, 
"galaxy.datatypes.registry.MDA_zip": {"galaxy.datatypes.registry.Binary": true, 
"": true, "galaxy.datatypes.binary.Binary": true, 
"galaxy.datatypes.registry.MDA_zip": true},
near the bottom in lower case
"galaxy.datatypes.registry.Text", "mda_zip": 
"galaxy.datatypes.registry.MDA_zip", "chips": "galaxy.datatypes.registry.Text", 
"gg": "galaxy.datatypes.genetics.GenomeGraphs", "syco": 
2. I also added a snapshot of the visualization/tool/ sub-directories.   It 
shows my extension because I have a format=type in the tool.xml output file 
defition but shows  file type 'binary' at the bottom of the file history.   Is 
this correct, or should it be my extension type there?
Comment -- It appears the only link between the file extension and the 
visualization plugin is via the test line in the /conf/toolxml file.  Is that 
My xml in my visualize directory /tool/config/tool.xml     (formatting is 
messed up here) attachment 1
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?>
<!DOCTYPE visualization SYSTEM "../../visualization.dtd">
<visualization name="MDAheatmap">
                            <test type="isinstance" test_attr="datatype" 
                                           <param type="dataset" 
var_name_in_template="hda" required="true">dataset_id</param>
              <entry_point entry_point_type="mako">MDAheatmap.mako</entry_point>
My templates/tool.mako file (hello world)





         A Small Hello





   <P>This is very minimal "hello world" HTML document.</P>



startup info seems successful
galaxy.web.base.pluginframework INFO 2015-12-14 13:20:09,631 
VisualizationsRegistry, loaded plugin: MDAheatmap
x.x.10.42 - - [14/Dec/2015:14:11:50 -0400] "PUT 
/api/histories/a799d38679e985db/contents/datasets/fb85969571388350 HTTP/1.1" 
200 - "http://xx.xx.10.4:8082/"; "Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10_9_5) 
AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/47.0.2526.80 Safari/537.36"
no skipping error and no other apparent errors   in startup
here is my Datatypes.conf.xml 2 additions
   <datatype extension="MDA_zip" type="galaxy.datatypes.binary:MDA_zip" 
mimetype="application/octet-stream" display_in_upload="true" subclass="False"> 
and sniffer
   <sniffer type="galaxy.datatypes.binary:MDA_zip"/>
my addition
class MDA_zip( Binary ):
   """Class describing an MDA Heatmap binary zip file"""
   file_ext = "MDA_zip"
   def set_peek( self, dataset, is_multi_byte=False ):
       if not dataset.dataset.purged:
           dataset.peek = "Binary MDA_zip sequence file"
           dataset.blurb = nice_size( dataset.get_size() )
           dataset.peek = 'file MDA_zip does not exist'
           dataset.blurb = 'file MDA_zip purged from disk'
   def display_peek( self, dataset ):
           return dataset.peek
           return "Binary MDA_zip heatmap file (%s)" % ( nice_size( 
dataset.get_size() ) )

my addition
class MDA_zipDataProvider( base.DataProvider ):
def __init__( self, dataset, **kwards ):
           self.dataset = json.loads( "".join( dataset.readlines() ))
   def __init__( self, dataset, **kwards ):
       raise NotImplementedError()
       super( MDA_zipDataProvider, self ).__init__( dataset, **kwargs )
My tool in tools dir
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?>
<!DOCTYPE visualization SYSTEM "../../visualization.dtd">
<tool id="MDAheatmap" name="MDA HeatMap" version="1.3.0">
 <description>Display HeatMap generated by MDAnderson HeatMap 
 <command interpreter="python"> $input $out_file </command>
   <param format="text" name="input" type="data" label="doesnt_matter" 
help="input any file and a MDA zipped file pulled off disk"/>
   <data format="MDA_zip" name="out_file"/>

----- Original Message -----From: Carl Eberhard <>To: 
rbrown1422@comcast.netCc: Eric Rasche <>, galaxy-dev 
<>Sent: Mon, 14 Dec 2015 16:40:34 -0000 
(UTC)Subject: Re: [galaxy-dev] How does one run Javascript or HTML as a tool? 
the complete message ignore previous

Hi, Bob

There are a number of ways to visualize data in Galaxy, so let's settle on some 
terminology first for the three major ways:
* display applications: these are definitions of external websites that can 
fetch galaxy datasets and display them in their visualization applications. 
Examples are the UCSC genome browser, GBrowse, and IGV.
* tools: although the tool framework generally produces 'raw' data like tabular 
or binary files, it can also produce the html (and js even) that can display 
data for visualization. An example would be 'Boxplot of quality statistics'. 
* visualization plugins: these are python/mako/js files that are meant to be 
more interactive visualizations in order to explore data

It sounds to me like you'd like to use the visualization plugin system, so:
* since they're for external code or websites, let's take display applications 
off the table entirely. 
* since they can be a viable alternative to the plugin system, so I'd keep 
tools as another option but keep our focus on the plugin system

It also sounds like you have two elements you'd like to incorporate:
* a datatype
* a plugin to display datasets of that datatype

The datatype
I'm more familiar with the plugin part of this process, but for the datatype it 
sounds like you want to subclass the binary datatype and add it to your galaxy 
installation. I'd start here (I imagine you've already seen it, tho):

Note: to see if your datatype was loaded successfully, with your server running 
- you can go to: /api/datatypes/mapping. You should be able to see your 
datatype listed at the first level of the json map, generally beginning with 
'galaxy.datatypes.' and the python module name you added it to (like a python 
import namespace): e.g. galaxy.datatypes.binary.H5 or 

To simplify:
1. Add a definition to your datatypes_conf file
2. Add a sniffer for your datatype
3. Add a subclass/class for your datatype

The plugin
For the plugin, I also imagine you've seen this, but it's a (hopefully) good 
place to start:

The filesystem layout
Here's a simplified process for creating an outline for a visualization plugin 
1. in the filesystem, start at <your galaxy>/config/plugins/visualizations
2. think of an id for your plugin. This can be any (filesystem permissible) 
file name and is only used as an id by the registry - the users never see it. 
It should be unique from any other plugins in that directory. (e.g. myplugin)
3. create a main directory using your id. (e.g. <your 
4. inside that directory, create three more directories: config, templates, 
static. This is where the plugin configuration, the mako templates, and any 
(optional) javascript or static files are kept respectively.
5. the configuration file should use the same id you used above for the 
directory: e.g. config/myplugin.xml. Most people copy and rename a simple 
config file like the one in 
config/plugins/visualizations/scatterplot/config/scatterplot.xml. We'll change 
the datatype it applies to later, but there's more at:
6. a mako template file should go into the templates directory: e.g. 
templates/myplugin.mako. This template file is the entry point for your 
visualization and is loaded first. You don't have to do any major coding here 
and can instead just launch javascript to render the visualization.

At this point, your config/plugins/visualizations/myplugin directory should 
look like one of the two trees displayed here:

The configuration
Now, we'll configure the plugin by editing the 
config/plugins/visualizations/myplugin/config/myplugin.xml file. Let's assume 
you've copied the scatterplot config file 

1. change the name displayed to what you'd like users to see in the dataset 
visualizations dropdown menu: 
l<visualization name="My Visualization Plugin">

2. change the configuration for your visualization to test for your datatype. 
For example, if you have mydatatype, change:

        <test type="isinstance" test_attr="datatype" 
        <to_param param_attr="id">dataset_id</to_param>

The above is basically saying, if an object is a) a HistoryDatasetAssociation 
(a dataset in a history) and b) it's a subclass or instance of 
binary.MyDatatype, then put a link:
* in the dataset visualization dropdown menu 
* that will start my visualization
* pass the encoded id of the dataset in the link using the parameter 

Note: the 'binary.MyDatatype' is essentially 'module.class' and is also the 
last half of the id given in the 'api/datatypes/mapping' mentioned previously. 

3. change the template used as the entry point to reflect the name you gave it:
<entry_point entry_point_type="mako">myplugin.mako</entry_point>

Testing and troubleshooting
Finally, you should be at a spot that:
* your visualization will appear in the visualization dropdown menu of datasets 
that are of the mydatatype class
* if that menu link is clicked, galaxy will go to visualization/show/<your 
plugin id>. E.g. /visualization/show/myplugin?dataset_id=0b1d0715f8366ea8
* whatever code is in myplugin.mako will be executed (you should be able to use 
print in python or alert in javascript to test)

* If your server is running when you've made changes to your config file, 
you'll need to restart it (changes to mako and static files do not need a 
* Make sure your id is used in the proper places above and that they all match
* If galaxy is trying to load or loading your visualization plugin, you should 
see an entry like this in your server logs:
galaxy.web.base.pluginframework INFO 2015-12-14 08:46:44,788 
VisualizationsRegistry, loaded plugin: myplugin
* errors will also display there
* it can help to change 'debug = True' in your config/galaxy.ini file (only do 
this on a separate development server - not you public shared instances)

I know that's a lot of info, so let me know if I can add or clarify on any of 

On Sat, Dec 12, 2015 at 9:57 AM, <> wrote:

Thank you Eric,

But I want to be clear after spending 5 days, reading many Galaxy wiki links, 
looking at samples, and with help from others trying to get this to work.  I 
have written many tools but never tried to display a unique datatype before.
Below is a series of questions and steps I followed trying the suggestions from 
early posts. 

My goals are:
-- To get  the visualization icon to show in the bottom left of my history 
output file?     
-- click the visualization icon to display my data (that I will process to 
display) inside Galaxy.

The steps below are in order of urgency:)

Thank you for you patience.

1.  /Config/plugin/visualization is where code goes to have a Galaxy internal 
module display a user defined data type?  -- mine is binary
Without getting to in the weeds under this directory I have a mydatatype dir 
with subdirectories /config w xml, /static w .js, /templates w mako made of html

2.  Under /lib/galaxy/datatypes/display_applications  I tried the same approach 
with no success. Is this where code goes for external displays that use get and 
post reside?

3.  which if any of 1or2 above use the Tools/Visualization directory.  Is that 
the convention for the return of a Get or Post external displays?

4.  I create my own datatype in  data_config_type.xml  with a <datatype> tag

5.  in data_config_type.xml you only use the <display>  record which -- 
internal or external displays?

6.  I added a class in the  file with the name of my new datatype.  

7.  I added a tool.mydatatype section and file with my xml to input and then 
output my datatype by specifying  format=mydatatype not 
format=binary.mydatatype       Plus I added this into Tools_conf.xml  Are there 
other xml specific items I need in my tool xml for an internal visualization

8. By clicking the visualization icon. what does it call (hopefully 1or2 above) 
so i can add specific code to display my datatype internal "visualization?" 
(preferred) in galaxy?

----- Original Message -----From: Eric Rasche <>To: 
rbrown1422@comcast.netCc: galaxy-dev <>Sent: Tue, 08 
Dec 2015 02:34:47 -0000 (UTC)Subject: Re: [galaxy-dev] How does one run 
Javascript or HTML as a tool?

Hi Bob,

Yes, galaxy supports output formats of HTML+JS, though the tool producing them 
may need to be whitelisted (grep for 'whitelist' in your galaxy.ini) for 
display to work properly.

If you wish to write your own visualization plugin for a specific datatype, 
there are assorted pieces of documentation on the wiki that might help you 
(though I usually just look at one of the other existing visualization plugins 
and copy+paste).


2015-12-07 20:08 GMT-06:00 <>:

Good evening Galaxy team,

Is it possible to run JavaScript or HTML as a tool or a display module? 

I see support for URLs, e.g. UCSC Genome Browser, but I would like to process a 
specific datatype to allow it to be viewed in Galaxy -- but the application is 
a combination of HTML and JavaScript.  

Does Galaxy support this?  

Thank you,

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Eric Rasche
Programmer II

Center for Phage Technology
Rm 312A, BioBio
Texas A&M University
College Station, TX 77843


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