When developing websites for our company we always, without execption, go through a stage of complete despair, agony and utter rage. That particular moment occurs when we test our work in the lovely browser made by the ever sympathetic software giant Microsoft. Yes, I’m talking about Internet Explorer, always the first to extract all the fun out of web development.
We test in the three “most recent” versions of Internet Explorer — 6,7 and 8. Calling IE6 a “recent” browser always makes me want to shoot somebody, as the fossil is nearly 8 years old. But there are still some fuckwits who think updating software is stupid, because you shouldn’t change something which isn’t (in their eyes) broken, and happily use the piece of garbage for their daily browsing activities.
While I applaud the initiative of some developers to stop developing for IE6, I think testing in at least two versions of Internet Explorer will still be a requirement in the near future. To make matters worse Microsoft made Explorer an integral part of its OS — something Neelie Kroes doesn’t particularly like — so you can’t run standalone versions of their browser without performing some serious voodoo.
I used the <a href=http://tredosoft.com/Multiple_IE”>MultipleIE installer by Tredosoft to accomplish the aforementioned voodoo, but they stopped supporting the application a while ago. There is also a Standalone IE 7 package from the same developer, but that doesn’t work very well in conjunction with MultipleIE 6 install and IE 8.
In the recent comments on the MultipleIE page I came across Internet Explorer Collection, which seems to be a viable alternative to Tredosoft’s package. There are still some rough edges, but overall the experience is as smooth as MultipleIE’s parallel install once was.