How to do cross browser sanity testing in less than 5 minutes for free

Cross browser, cross operating system testing is a costly and tedious task. Most often we test our web application on the Internet Explorer and Fire Fox installed on our machine and hope for the best. In big projects with rigid compliance requirements we test the major operating systems (Apple, Windows and sometimes a popular Linux distribution) with the major Browsers. The underline assumption is that this covers 99.x% of the population and we are happy with that. But what if we could, without additional cost, see how our web site looks like in many operating systems and multiple browsers?

Browsershots makes screenshots of your web design in different browsers. It is a free open-source online service. When you submit your web address, it will be added to the job queue. A number of distributed computers will open your website in their browser. Then they will make screenshots and upload them to the central server.

here is how you set your web address and the OS and browsers list:

I gave it a go and here is how my site looks like:

In Firefox / Ubuntu 8.04:

And I might have a little problem in Debian:

And so on and so forth. It is a good tool to provide you with indicative testing (AKA smoke/sanity testing) and it is free!

What do you think? Should I fix the Debian problem? should I change my site’s UI?

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Amir Shevat

Amir Shevat is the global Startup Outreach lead in Google Developer Relations ( Previously, Amir Led Google Campus Tel Aviv and was the co founder of several startups.

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1 Response

  1. anonymous says:

    It looks like the broken page is not done loading. The google ads are still loading. You might want to look into a way of loading the ads after the page is loaded.

    I’d try running that screenshot again on browsershots to see if the problem still exists when the page is finished loading.

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