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Thread: Headache multi browsers support
Mar 20, 2007, 20:59 #1
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Mar 20, 2007, 21:14 #2
It is a lot of work.
Generally it is considered best to code to and test primarily in Firefox while also checking the page as you go in any version of IE you support. Safari, Opera and other good behaving browsers can be checked also but generally if the site/page holds up well in Firefox it will be pretty solid in Opera and Safari (with some exceptions of course).
Picking up CSS takes days. Mastering CSS takes years - just when you think you have it in the bag - some browser issue will cause you to feel like a beginner all over again. To be really really good at CSS - good enough to earn a living from it - you need to be able to code complex pages (both from a visual and programmatic perspective) that work in all major browsers - and do it fairly quickly and cleanly.
If you aren't doing that than you are not quite there yet but if you want to you will acquire the greater experience you need through daily practice.
CSS has given all of us many headaches at one time or another in spite of its seeming simplicity - don't feel bad - we have all wished the browsers behaved the same. That won't be (completely) happening any time soon.
Mar 21, 2007, 01:28 #3
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Actually, it's best to check in the four major rendering engines (Trident, Gecko, Presto, and KHTML/WebKit) as you code. This can be accomplished by checking in IE 5.5, IE 6, IE 7, FireFox 1.x (some flavors of Linux use 1.x for licensing reasons), FireFox 2, Opera 9 (Opera users tend to be very tech-savvy and are very quick to upgrade), Konqueror 3 and Safari 2. For IE, you'll have to either get a standalone browser pack (such as on browsers.evolt.org or Tredosoft) or use a virtual machine to run a full version of Windows with IE on it. "Browsers" (they're not browsers, but psuedo-browsers that just sit on top of IE's Trident rendering engine) such as Avast, Deepnet Explorer, and Maxthon) use IE's rendering engine, so there's no need to even bother using them in the first place. FireFox is representative of the Gecko rendering engine, so if you get that, you shouldn't have to worry about testing on Flock, Galeon, K-Meleon, Camino, Ephiphany or the other browsers that use that engine (and believe me, there are plenty of them). Opera is self-explanitory (or it will be soon once I get an article on the browser published at Search-This later today), which leaves you with Konqueror and Safari. If you're using a Windows PC, you'll be out of luck since Konqueror uses Linux's Konqueror KDE, while Safari runs on Apple's Mac OS X. You can use browser simulators for these two browsers, which can help, but should not replace actual user testing with those browsers.
It all starts with the bare minimum of clean, semantic, and valid (X)HTML code. Think about how the document is structured, instead of how you want it to look. If you're going to wrap DIVs around block-level elements, do so ONLY if you intend to style that entire block (either to create a box or to float a column). If you think you can do without the DIV, then try it out - if it works, you know you can get rid of it.
When you're done with marking up your (X)HTML page, validate your code; if it validates, start styling your page. Work your way through the (X)HTML source, checking in the browsers as you go. It may sound tedious and time-intensive, but you WILL save yourself a LOT of debugging time in the end if you do it this way.Save the Internet - Use Opera | May my mother rest in peace: 1943-2009
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Mar 21, 2007, 05:00 #4
can i just make css for ie6
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I'm afraid that browser testing is part and parcel of a designers lot and there is no way around it. (Things are a little better now that Ie7 is being taken up and maybe one day IE6 will be dead and buried.)
You have been given good advice in the posts above which should help you on your way. Make sure you use valid html/css from the start and that you check in the browsers you want to support on each step of the design.
In this way you can avoid things (or change the design) when there are issues with the appearance rather than waiting until the end when it is too late. More often than not slight design changes will make the layout work better rather than resorting to a hack.
These days when we talk about hacking we are really talking about offering IE different code because it usually the biggest culprit. There are no other reliable ways of targeting other browsers so don't bother.
Usually the correct code for the job in hand will render good results across most other browsers. If you do encounter a bug in these other browsers then usually it will require a change of design as you can't target then specifically to correct the problem. Most times a slightly different approach to the problem will yield good results.