Maintaining multi-browser compatibility has been one of the most time-consuming and frustrating part of web programming. Although things are getting better with decline in IE6’s use, the situation is far from ideal.
If you are a web developer, you sure have to take care of browser compatibilities and ensure that your web app looks and works almost the same, if not entirely the same across different browsers and platforms.
If you have been looking for an easy solution to see how your site looks in different browsers, then check out the new Adobe BrowserLab. Adobe BrowserLab provides you with exact renderings of your webpages as they would look in different browsers and operating systems. The service might remind you of Browsershots which also provides you with screenshots of your site in different browsers. There is however, no waiting required in Adobe BrowserLab and you get to see the results almost instantaneously.
Adobe BrowserLab allows you to preview your work in Firefox 2.X Windows, Firefox 3.X Windows, Firefox 2.X Mac OS, Firefox 3.X Mac OS, IE6.X and IE7.X and Safari 3.X; which is less than what you can get with Browsershots but includes the popular browsers.
You can view the results side by side (2-up) view, or any individual screenshot (1-up view) or compare the renderings with the “onion-skin” view which overlays one screenshot over the other (as seen below).
You can install BrowserLab MXP extensions to integrate Adobe BrowserLab with Dreamweaver CS4, which would then allow you to preview and compare the local files which you are developing for your site.
Looks too good to be true? Well it is true, at least for a certain period of time anyway. Adobe BrowserLab is a limited free preview service. While Adobe is testing the service, they are letting people hop on board. The final product would most likely require you to shell out some bucks. However, with the time most webapps take these days to drop out of beta stages, you might be able to use BrowserLab for at least a considerable amount of time. You can give it a thorough spin and decide if you would like to spend some money to avail its services in the future.
Interested in webdesign? Check out our MakeUseOf posts to help you become a web-designing wizard.
What clever ways do you use to preview your work in different browsers? Virtualization? Or you install all the browsers? Let us know about them in the comments.