Testing web app on devices in local network

Pow is originally a tool to test Rails application. It is also capable for being a lightweight server for static HTML website, where static files are inside a public folder.

It makes the local development URL with a host name. For example, you can have http://projectA.dev, http://game.dev, http://listview.dev running in your now development machine.

What’s more? It comes with a wildcard DNS tool called Xip.io. It makes the following URL pattern possible:

<pow_name>.<local network IP address>.xip.io

For example:

If we have a car game web app developing. We may use the following for local test.


And assuming the IP address of the development machine is

Then I can access this web game from any devices within my local network, by using the following URL.


The URL will be resolved to machine and the Pow server will handle which app to response.

It is very simple to use it.

Just symbolic link the project path to <any domain name>.dev in the ~/.pow folder.

Alternatively, you can use a ruby gem called powder to help.

1# inside your project folder
2$ powder link

What’s next? We’re going to take a look at “App distribution”.

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Makzan | Mobile web app dev with phonegap | Table of Content