Flex 3 import swf symbols

If you’d like to embed a .swf file into your Flex 3 application you’ll probably get into several little problems. The simple task of embedding is clear and well documented in the web. Let’s assume we’ve to MovieClip symbols into a single .swf file. What we like to do is to access this two separate symbols within the Flex applications as MovieClip.

make a movie clip in your flash
Make a new MovieClip symbol in your Flash

Make the .swf sample file with both symbols inside. In general it’s not that hard, just put this into your Flex application code:

[Embed(source="embed.swf", symbol="blue")]
private var blue:Class;

[Embed(source=”embed.swf, symbol=”red”)]
private var red:Class

Note that you’ve embed.swf file, which has to be in the same folder as the main .swf of the Flex app, and two symbols named red and blue for the sample. Be very careful when exporting the symbols from the .swf file. Do not forget to export them for actionscript.

Don't forget to export the .swf MovieClip for actionscript
Don't forget to export the .swf MovieClip for actionscript

If not exported like that, you’ll have trouble accessing them from the Flex app, and that’s the first problem you can have here.

Set the name of the MovieClip exactly as you wish to appear in your Flex application
Set the name of the MovieClip exactly as you wish to appear in your Flex application

The rest you have to do is to add this two lines of code in Flex:

var mc:MovieClip = new blue();

Note that the last line can have something else than ‘this’ if there’s other element to become parent of the imported MovieClip symbol. Here comes the first major problem. As www.airtightinteractive.com describes this technique does not work every time:

Sometimes when you do this you will get the following error:

TypeError: Error #1034: Type Coercion failed: cannot convert app_red@12510d1 to flash.display.MovieClip.

And the author shares his solution which is to add at least 2 keyframes for both movie clips, so that they can be visible as movie clips, if not they will remain visible only as Sprites.

I’m not as conviced this is the right answer of the question and the right solution. I’ve experimented with 1 or 2 keyframes and still have the same problem in Flex even if i cast the symbols as Sprite, not MovieClip:

var mc:MovieClip = new blue();
var mc:Sprite = new blue();

The solution from Adobes for me is not suficient, cause the movie clips we import (embed) does not serve as images but more like movie clips, which was the task from the beggining. And that’s what Adobe says:

Flex fully supports embedding Flash SWF files. You can embed different types of SWF files.

To reference a symbol, you specify the symbol parameter:
[Embed(source=’SWFFileName.swf’, symbol=’symbolName’)]

And again read carefully the note in the Adobe’s site:

Note: Flash defines three types of
symbols: Button, MovieClip, and Graphic. You can embed Button and
MovieClip symbols in a Flex application, but you cannot embed a Graphic symbol because it cannot be exported for ActionScript.

Here you can be sure that lack of exported for actionscript symbol is not accessible in Flex.

One of the main solutions is to embed the .swf as octet-stream:

[Embed(source="embed.swf", mimeType="application/octet-stream")]
private var blue:Class;

followed by:

var loader:Loader = new Loader()
loader.loadBytes(new blue());

And the key point of this will be the lines:

var red:Class = loader.contentLoaderInfo.applicationDomain.getDefinition("blue");
var mc:MovieClip = new red() as MovieClip;

I hope this can help

14 thoughts on “Flex 3 import swf symbols

  1. I have gotten the above code to work, but I need a method to embedd all the classes in the SWF file all at once. I have hundreds and don’t want to have to have hundreds of embed statements in my code.

    I have seen other people suggest that you can embedd swf files and leave off the symbol paramenter. But then how do I access a particular symbol in the giant class that includes all the subclasses?

  2. Hello! I have the same problem as Icono. I have a swf with many diferent symbols that i need to use. I need to get all of the them in an arraycollection to contruct a datagrid to show them all. The problem is how to acess all of the names of the symbols inside the swf.

  3. At least they should be exported with the appropriate class definition, are they? If so you can get all of them looping over their parent element.

    If they are not on the same level, the task is a little bit difficult, you must make some recursive function to collect them all.

    If that doesn’t help, please provide any source code, I’ll try to help as much as possible.


  4. Hello!

    I can load it if i embed the swf with a reference to the icon as you show above. What you mean about being at the same level? They are stored in a folder only sow symbols inside the swf. Can you show me how to get a name of one symbol without hardcoded it?


  5. Ебать как просто оказывается..
    Thanks.. Я как раз искал решение.. И вот оно..
    Просто и гениально.. Спасибо..

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