As a webmaster, you need to make sure that your website displays in the most popular web browsers correctly. While you can install a selection of browsers on your system to test your sites from the local system, it is not always possible to do so as browsers may be limited to particular operating systems.
The latest version of Safari is for instance not available for Windows or Linux, and Internet Explorer 10 is only available for Windows 7 and newer versions of the operating system and not older ones or Linux or Mac systems.
That's were online services and programs come into play that test websites for compatibility with select web browsers.
Microsoft has released an option to scan websites for Internet Explorer 10 compatibility recently which webmasters can make use of to find out whether their sites render fine in the browser.
All that it takes is to enter the website url into the form on the website and wait a couple of seconds for the report to be displayed on the same page.
The results are grouped into three categories:
The first group scans for known compatibility issues, whether the web page is rendering in compatibility mode, if it requires frameworks or libraries, whether it supports the latest version of Internet Explorer and whether it has a DocType that recognizes modern web standards.
The second group analyzes cross-browser and device specific issues including whether CSS prefixes are used, if the web page requires browser plugins to run properly, if it is using a responsive web design, and if it uses browser detection scripts to display different contents depending on the browser used.
The third and final group is all about support for Windows 8. This includes if the website comes with its own custom start screen tile and if the webpage has set the default behavior for touch-based browsing in Internet Explorer 10 on devices running Windows 8.
If compatibility issues are found they are displayed in detail on the page including an "why it is important" paragraph. There are also links included in this case that point to implementation information to find out how support for a feature can be added to the website.
Reports can be downloaded as pdf documents, or shared by email, Twitter or Facebook. There are also options to ask questions about the report in the MSDN forums or on StackOverflow.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.