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15 May 2011

Testing Web Pages


Same Page Different ‘Look’

Browsers render web pages differently depending on:

  • screen resolution
  • images enabled/disabled
  • OS – Mac/Windows
  • fonts installed
  • browser brand & version
  • connection speed

Cater as best you can for the above factors but accept that you don’t have total control. Pages need to render well on all commonly used browsers and platforms.

Test often. At a minimum, it is advisable to test your pages in the following browsers.
These browsers must be downloaded and installed prior to testing.

  • Internet Explorer 6.0, 7.0, 8.0 and newer when available
  • Firefox from 3.0, 3.5, 3.6 and newer when available
  • Google Chrome 5.0 and newer when available
  • Safari from 4.0 and newer when available
  • Opera 10.0 and newer when available

Information on browser market share can be found at: http://www.netmarketshare.com/browser-market-share.aspx?qprid=2#.

Utilise Dreamweaver’s new Browser Lab tool (CS5 only). Browsers do not need to be installed to use this tool but you will require a free Adobe user account.

You can test pages in various versions of Internet Explorer at: http://ipinfo.info/netrenderer. Internet Explorer does not need to be installed on your computer to use this tool.

The Firefox Web Developer Toolbar

The free Firefox Web Developer toolbar contains handy tools for testing and analysing pages including:

  • Viewing a page at various screen resolutions.
  • Examining CSS for a web.
  • Examining images and form elements.
  • Checking whether a page is displaying in ‘Standards’ or ‘Quirks’ mode.
  • Disabling JavaScript actions.

It must be downloaded and installed from the Firefox browser and is available from:
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/60,. To install, click the [Install] button and follow the instructions.

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