04 Mar 2009, 18:16
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jacob123 (2 posts)

We all know the importance of checking our web pages with multiple browsers, especially when [url=http://www.intellixmedia.com/flash-web-design.htm] Flash Web Design [/url] are designing a new layout for a website. This is the case even if we are writing validated standards-compliant code. The number of extant browsers we need to check with are enormous: Internet Explorer (IE) 7, 6, 5.5 and 5.0, Firefox 2.0 and 1.5, Opera 9 and 8, and so on. And then there are the different platforms: Windows, Macintosh (Mac), Linux, etc. The problem for most people is that multiple versions of certain browsers cannot co-exist with each other, the most notable example of this is IE for Windows. Unless you are privileged to have multiple computers, this presents a certain difficulty for the average webmaster. This article suggests some ways for you to run multiple versions of multiple browsers on one computer.

Note that this article is written primarily from the point of view of a person using Windows (the majority of people reading this article), although it does address the issue of Mac browsers and Linux browsers as well. It’s possible for different versions of Firefox, Seamonkey, Netscape and the old Mozilla browser to all co-exist on the same machine. If you did not already know, Mozilla Firefox, Seamonkey, Netscape 6 to 9 and the (old) Mozilla Suite browser use the same Gecko rendering engine. As such, if you have Netscape 6.X, you are in effect using the rendering engine of a beta version of Mozilla (one of the 0.9.X series); if you use Netscape 7, you are using the Mozilla 1.0.X engine; and if you use Netscape 7.1 you’re using the same engine as Mozilla 1.4. The point is that you don’t have to install, say, Mozilla 1.0.X if you’re using Netscape 7, and so on. It is easy to make these versions of Netscape/Mozilla/Firefox co-exist with each other. Install them into separate directories and create a different profile for each browser you install. (For non-Netscape/Mozilla users, this browser allows you to create different profiles so that you can store different settings for different situations.)

To create a different profile for Firefox, simply start Firefox with the following command line: “c:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox” -ProfileManager

Once you’ve finished creating profiles, you will want to create shortcuts (Windows terminology) to run the different versions of the browser. This makes life easier for you: you can simply click the appropriate icon for the different versions, and it will load using the correct profile. To specify which profile the browser is to load, put the profile name after the “-P” option. For example, if you have created a profile named “netscape6”, your command for running (say) Netscape with that profile may look like:

“C:\Program Files\Netscape\Netscape 6\netscp6.exe” -P netscape6

Similarly, your command to run the Firefox with a profile called “firefox” may look like: “c:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox” -P firefox And so on.

I’m not sure that you really need all the different implementations of the Gecko engine to test, though. I personally only test my sites with latest version of Firefox since my site design tends to be simple.

05 Feb 2012, 08:08
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Erick Aqua (1 post)

I believe the best way to achieve this is virtualizing your browsers using VMware ThinApp, It will easily allow you to run all kind of browsers at the same time. The following post show you how to do that as well has a video showing it done.

http://www.virtualizationteam.com/virtualization-vmware/vmware-thinapp/the-magic-of-application-virtualization-with-vmware-thinapp.html

Good luck! Erick

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