25 July 2010
Adobe Flash Professional components are building blocks for creating rich interactive applications on the web. By providing complex pieces that behave in a consistent way and are ready to use and customize, components significantly reduce the time and effort needed to develop applications from scratch.
Although the component framework enables you to add new functionality with prebuilt features, the use of components can potentially add considerable file size to your Flash project. Components inherit from each other. One component adds size to your Flash document, but subsequent components that use the same framework do not necessarily add more size. As you add components to the Stage, the file size increases—but at some point it levels off because components share classes and do not load new copies of those shared classes.
However, if you use multiple components that do not share the same framework, it could substantially increase the file size of the published SWF file. For example, the XMLConnector component adds 17K to the SWF file and TextInput components add 24K to your document. If you add the ComboBox component, it adds 28K because it is not part of the framework of either previous component. Because the XMLConnector component uses data binding, the classes add 6K to the SWF file. A document that uses all these components has 77K before you add anything else to the file. Carefully consider your SWF file size when you add a new component to the document.
Components must exist in the parent SWF file's library. For example, an application must have a copy of the components it uses in its library, even if those components are required only by child SWF files that are loaded at runtime. This is necessary to ensure that the components function properly, and it slightly increases the time it takes to download the parent SWF file. However, the parent library isn't inherited or shared in the SWF files that you load into the parent. Each child SWF file must download to the application with its own copy of the same components.
When you are planning to publish a SWF file with backward compatibility, it's important to have a good understanding of which components have that capability. The following table provides information about component support in different versions of Adobe Flash Player:
|Components||Pre-Flash Player 6 *||Flash Player 6||Flash Player 7, 8||Flash Player 9|
|ActionScript 3||Not supported||Not supported||Not supported||Supported|
|V2 UI component set||Not supported||Supported||Supported||Supported|
|Media components||Not supported||Not supported||Supported||Supported|
|Data components||Not supported||Not supported||Supported||Supported|
* Prior to Flash Player 188.8.131.52
To learn more about working with components, see the Components Learning Guide for Flash.