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The OpenLink Structured Data Sniffer (OSDS)

How do I use the OpenLink Structured Data Sniffer?

Download and Installation

Installation is a few simple steps, which vary with your browser.

Google Chrome

There are two options for basic installation of OSDS —

  • You may choose to install the latest stable OSDS release available in the Chrome Store, as with any other Chrome add-on.

  • If you prefer, you may install the latest development version, which takes a few more steps, as follow --

    1. Download the zip or tar.gz source code archive from the OSDS Github page.
    2. Extract the archive to a local directory/folder.
    3. Open the Chrome browser.
    4. Select from menu: Chrome -> Preferences -> Extensions.
    5. Check the Developer mode box.
    6. Choose the option Load Unpacked Extension...
    7. Navigate to the folder containing the extracted source code.
    8. Press the Select button.
    9. OSDS will be added to your browser's installed extensions list.

This brief (less than 2 minutes) video shows the whole Chrome process, including a live test of functionality.

Optimizing Interaction in Chrome

After basic installation, a few browser UI/UX tweaks may be required to enable optimal use of OSDS.

  1. Open a new browser window or tab.
  2. Locate the OSDS icon 16px OSDS icon in the toolbar. Depending on how many other extensions you have installed, the size of your browser window, and other variables, it may have "overflowed" to the Chrome menu Chrome menu icon.

    osds-chrome1-extension-menu

  3. If the OSDS icon has overflowed, right- or control-click it, and choose Keep in Toolbar.

    osds-chrome2-keep-in-toolbar

  4. Click-and-drag the OSDS icon to the immediate right of the Omnibox (where the current page's URL is displayed) or wherever you prefer.

    osds-chrome3-toolbar-cust     osds-chrome4-ready

Microsoft Edge (Windows 10 Anniversary Update or later)

Our installation guide for Edge was based on this general user's guide and this developer's guide, each of which may have other information that is helpful to you.

Eventually, you'll be able to get OSDS from the Windows Store. For now,

  1. Download the OSDS_Edge_2_14_1.zip file to a local directory/folder, and unzip its content to a directory of your choosing.
  2. Open the Edge browser.
  3. If this is the first extension you're manually installing
    1. type 'about:flags' into the address bar.
    2. Select the Enable extension developer features checkbox.
    3. Select More (...) to open the menu.
  4. If you've manually installed one or more extensions in the past, click or tap the menu button in the top-right corner of the window, and select "Extensions." (If you don’t see an Extensions option in the list here, you need to upgrade to the Windows 10 Anniversary Update.)
  5. The Extensions panel will appear, listing all your installed extensions.
  6. Select Extensions from the menu.
  7. Select the Load extension button.
  8. Navigate to the folder you extracted to in step 1 (or the folder within) that contains the manifest.json file and click the Select folder button.
    NOTE: If you encounter an error message when loading the extension, refer to the troubleshooting page for guidance.
  9. You should now see OSDS listed in Microsoft Edge's extension pane.

NOTE: For the time being, Microsoft Edge will ask if you want to enable this extension every time the browser is restarted. Once OSDS is approved for and installed from the Microsoft Store, this prompt will stop repeating.

This brief (less than a minute) video shows the whole Edge process, including a live test of functionality.

Mozilla Firefox (v28+)

There are two options for basic installation of OSDS —

  • You may choose to install the latest stable OSDS release available in the Mozilla Extensions Store, as with any other Firefox add-on.

  • If you prefer, you may install the latest development version (note that this archive may pre- or post-date the stable release above), which takes a few more steps, as follow --

    1. Download the openlink_structured_data_sniffer-2.9.0-fx.xpi file to a local directory/folder, and unzip its content.
    2. Open the Firefox browser (v28 or later).
    3. In address bar type: about:config.
    4. Click the I'll be careful, I promise button.
    5. Search for xpinstall.signatures.required.
    6. Double click that line, repeating if necessary until the value is set to false.
    7. In address bar type: about:addons.
    8. Click on the Gear icon and select Install Add-On from file... from the menu.
    9. Navigate to the openlink_structured_data_sniffer-2.9.0-fx.xpi file you downloaded. Select this file, and click the Open button.
    10. Click the Install button.
    11. OSDS will be added to your browser's installed extensions list.

This brief (less than 2 minutes) video shows the whole Firefox process, including a live test of functionality.

Optimizing Interaction in Firefox

After basic installation, a few browser UI/UX tweaks may be required to enable optimal use of OSDS.

  1. Open a new browser window or tab.
  2. Locate the OSDS icon 16px OSDS icon in the toolbar. Depending on how many other extensions you have installed, the size of your browser window, and other variables, it may have "overflowed" to the extension menu ».

    osds-ff0-ext-menu-overflow

  3. If it's in the overflow, right-click it and select "Move to Menu". (This is necessary because Customization doesn't allow items to be dragged directly from the overflow.)

    osds-ff1-ext-overflow

  4. Click the menu icon Chrome menu icon and enter Toolbar customization mode by clicking Customize.

    osds-ff2-ext-menu-cust

  5. Click-and-drag the OSDS icon from the menu listing to the immediate right of the address box (where the current page's URL is displayed) or wherever you prefer.

    osds-ff3-ext-menu-cust     osds-ff4-ext-menu-cust

  6. Click Exit Customize, and OSDS is ready for efficient use.

    osds-ff5-ready

Opera

  1. Download the zip or tar.gz source code archive from the OSDS Github page.
  2. Extract the archive to a local directory/folder.
  3. Open the Opera browser.
  4. In the address bar, type opera://extensions.
  5. Click the Developer Mode button.
  6. Choose the option Load unpacked extension....
  7. Navigate to the folder containing the extracted source.
  8. Click the Select button.
  9. OSDS will be added to your browser's installed extensions list.

Vivaldi

  1. Download the zip or tar.gz source code archive from the OSDS Github page.
  2. Extract the archive to a local directory/folder.
  3. Open the Vivaldi browser.
  4. In the address bar, type vivaldi://extensions.
  5. Click the Developer Mode button.
  6. Choose the option Load unpacked extension....
  7. Navigate to the folder containing the extracted source, and to the src folder therein.
  8. Click the Select button.
  9. OSDS will be added to your browser's installed extensions list.

Usage and examples

Usage and examples vary with OSDS version. We split out particular milestone releases here —

The Bottom Line

Any person or organization that owns a web-site is perennially challenged in regards to content evaluation and update cycles aimed at increasing and sustaining visibility.

With OSDS, you're just a mouse-click away from a solution to this challenge.

Most important of all, OSDS reveals the nature and implications of a World Wide Web of entity relationships where the nature of entity and relationship-type semantics are comprehensible to both humans and machines.