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Microsoft IE Browser Support

Posted on 2011-03-17
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Hi,
I work for a very small company and I'm not sure what the current industry web developement standards are right now with the various versions of IE out there (v6, v7, v8 and beta v9).

Q:  If you are developing a new Web application, which version(s) do you go out of your way to support?  It's getting confusing and overwhelming?

I use this link : http://www.w3schools.com/browsers/browsers_stats.asp
just to see usage statistics.  It also looks like IE is loosing ground altogether  and usage for IE is all over the place (IE8 is now the most popular).  What about older web applications?

I'm trying to support IE7 (currently), Firefox, Chrome and Opera.

Any advise would be appreciated.

Thanks,
hefterr
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Question by:hefterr
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Expert Comment

by:Designbyonyx
ID: 35156791
IE7, IE8, and "everybody else" is about how it works.  Even IE9 is sort of in the "everybody else" category.  Most browsers today support web standards in a way that you can develop for one browser and it will work for the most part in all browsers.  You may have to make very subtle changes for different browsers like Firefox and Opera, and then you have to slit your wrists and gouge out your eyes for IE8 and IE7.

Once you learn all the caveats and stupidness exhibited by IE7 and IE8, you can start building websites in ways that just work without having to redo or rebuild anything for IE.
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Expert Comment

by:Designbyonyx
ID: 35156994
You can check out the Yahoo User Interface - namely the CSS resources.  I used to reference this one website who had some great examples of the YUI... but their site is down :(  Sad day, because they were a great resource!

Also, you should go ahead and build in HTML5, and you can get started using the HTML Boiler Plate.
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by:hefterr
ID: 35158210
Hi Designbyonyx,
Is there any site that documents the CSS differences between IE6, 7, 8 (and 9?) and "everbody else"?

Could you give me a quick overview of the Yahoo User Interface (what is it?) that you directed me to?  I'm a little familar with their JQuery libraries.

Thanks again,
hefterr
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Designbyonyx earned 500 total points
ID: 35158511
Hey, unfortunately there is really no one good source for understanding all of the differences between browsers.  I have been doing CSS and front end development for years and I still learn things about IE that blow my mind.   You pretty much have to have a very in depth experience with CSS and (x)hmtl in order to have a good knowledge about all the ins and outs of different browsers.

So let me explain the YUI library.  A lot of HTML elements come with default styling implemented by the browser (heading tags, lists, strong tags, etc) - and as you might guess, each browser styles things a little differently.  The RESET stylesheet basically zeros out all HTML elements so that elements have NO style.  Then the BASE and FONTS stylesheets add consistent style and sizing to elements so that all browsers are sort of "initialized" with the same exact styles.

Then, you have the GRID, which is used for Layout.  You can use the GRID stylesheet to create columns for your site.

Unfortunately, I cannot train you on how to use these CSS libraries because every site is different.  You have to gain an understanding of how CSS works.  There are many tutorials and examples out there.  By using a system like the YUI, you can rest assured that your site *should* look good in all browsers (with some minor tweeking for IE ;).

Also, here's a page with some example layouts.  I would find a layout that closely matches your design and modify it accordingly.
Hope that helps.
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Expert Comment

by:Designbyonyx
ID: 35158635
Sorry sorry sorry... don't follow that link I gave you.  That's the OLD YUI library... it's confusing and I don't recommend it.  Try these instead:

http://www.goer.org/Journal/2010/10/yui_3_grids_are_dead_simple.html
http://yuiblog.com/sandbox/yui/3.2.0pr1/examples/cssgrids/cssgrids-units.html
http://developer.yahoo.com/yui/3/examples/cssgrids/cssgrids-align.html
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Author Closing Comment

by:hefterr
ID: 35160054
Thanks for your help!
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