Preview your web pages in IE (6,7,8)

The market has long been screaming for a way to test multiple versions of Internet Explorer on the same installation of windows.

Along comes Microsoft Expression Blend 3 Super Preview (free download),  which claims to be able to test your pages in IE 6, 7 and 8 all on the same machine, and without installing previous versions, the paid version can even do Firefox.

Now I know a lot of the web development community are excited by this product, but I personally am not too sure this app will find its way into my list of useful web development tools.

This product is free for a reason. I can’t see this as a viable option really for a serious HTML handcoder / Javascripter.

So what exactly is wrong with it. It starts off looking really good, the installer is clean, and the app has a decent enough interface.

  1. Its too slow. It takes so long to load pages into the preview it goes against the flow of the way I design. This is to make small changes, save and check in each browser. This way when an issue comes up I can correct it without having to rewrite too much code. Unfortunately during testing, I found that a refresh could take up to 40 seconds per page on my live site. I am constantly saving and checking and so this product would just drive me crazy with all the wait time.
  2. I guess the main reason I dislike it: Its called super preview, but it doesn’t give you a live preview option, where you can click around and test the functionality of your site. It only loads a static view and after that the JS or dynamic content cannot be checked, unfortunately.

So if you really want to know how to test in IE 6, 7 or 8. Here are some options for you.


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