Octwelve – A Web Designer's Blog by Luc Melgar

Browser testing on Vista

January 3rd, 2008 · 18 Comments

As a web designer, it is crucial that I test my web pages in different browsers. And I’m having a hard time doing that on Windows Vista. Well, I didn’t really want a Vista, but when I ordered my laptop, the OS is built in and I have no choice. Ah, why do Microsoft do this?! I’m planning to jump back to XP but there are some threads about some problems when installing XP on Vostro 1700. I haven’t yet tried though.

Some guys from 9rules adviced me to get Virtual PC 2007 but according to Microsoft, Virtual PC 2007 runs on: Windows XP Professional, Windows XP Tablet PC, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista Business, Windows Vista Enterprise, and Windows Vista Ultimate. I have Windows Vista Home Basic.

Can anyone advice me on this? Had I known I cannot downgrade to XP or get any application to be able to run atleast IE6, I should’ve bought Macbook Pro instead like I initially planned and just bring my current rig with me to Singapore.

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18 responses so far

  • Toucouleur says:
    Jan 3, 2008 at 3:17 pm

    I was exactly like you are today but 6 months ago with my Dell Vostro. I’ve been tried to use Vista for 2 weeks, and after that I decided to send back my Dell and to buy a Macbook Pro. Althought I have no experience with Mac, I have been told it could be easy to install Vista on the Macbook if I was in need of it.

    6 months later, I still not installed Vista or any XP on my Macbook and as website designer (www.leguidesante.com for exemple and I found your blog within CSSMania) my choice was probably the best one. I couldn’t go back on Vista or XP.

    give to Mac a try you won’t be desapointed.

    Cédric from France

  • Luc says:
    Jan 3, 2008 at 5:14 pm

    I want to! I hope people will give some love so I can purchase Macbook Pro already ^_^

  • Neil says:
    Jan 3, 2008 at 7:45 pm

    Hi there, I guess if you just need to other operating system for testing purposes I would recommend that install VMWARE I guess they have there opensource evaluation version too or otherwise there are many torrent websites out there to help you to get the full version of the software . I have been using VMWARE since longtime now and I feel that this is something that can help you out … moreover if in future you happen to install WINXP on your Laptop , Use the Vmware then to install VISTA on it and I guess that will really help you out to get through . I even have Apple OSX installed on my VMWARE . Though it’s just used for testing purposes to create my in the Laptop VPN’s .
    Cheers !!!
    And Nice website…

  • Gavin Elliott says:
    Jan 3, 2008 at 8:24 pm


    It does work, check out my post on my blog http://www.gavinelliott.co.uk/index.php/2007/09/13/ie6-and-vista-does-work-together/

    Hope it helps. Any problems give me a shout :)


  • ceaGallery says:
    Jan 4, 2008 at 9:14 pm

    even though i am a PC user and i have never tried to use Macbook, i always hear that Macbook is better for designers, photographers… You can install also on Macbook BootCamp (or something like this software) that allows you to install a Windows OS on Macbook and run both Apple OS X & XP at the same time. Check you tube, you can see some videos where Mac user are switching in a sec between XP & OSX.

  • Luc says:
    Jan 5, 2008 at 8:16 am

    Yeah, I’ve heard about that. And there’s Wine also, which runs Windows programs on Mac without requiring the whole OS. Check it out http://5thirtyone.com/archives/869

  • EddieDC says:
    Jan 5, 2008 at 9:40 am

    Hi Luc,

    You should look into getting a macbook since your right you can install windows in the same computer. I do exactly that to test websites in the window side of my imac 24″… you really get the best of both worlds.

    There’s also a service that checks your site in all browser including windows/mac. I’ll look for the site and post later. It might be an option for you


  • Luc says:
    Jan 5, 2008 at 10:37 am

    Hi Eddie,
    How about the licensing of softwares like Adobe. Installers for PC won’t work with Mac, right?


  • EddieDC says:
    Jan 5, 2008 at 11:10 am


    I’m pretty sure the pc licensing won’t work on mac. Since you bought the adobe package though you should get a big discount if you were to get say the cs3 package for the mac. Dont you think?


  • Luc says:
    Jan 5, 2008 at 12:10 pm

    Interesting! If budget permits I’d probably get one. I’m not loaded with cash so I have to deal with Vostro for now. ^_^

  • Samuel Faith says:
    Jan 9, 2008 at 3:25 pm


    Give Mac a try. It is the only right one for ingenious design angel like you.

    And Wine, it is formerly available for *nix systems. Since OS X started using BSD Unix, Wine becomes available on it too. But it is harder to use than VMWare. I suggest you to try VMWare unless you want to be in a hell of configurations.

    And hey when are you going?


  • Luc says:
    Jan 11, 2008 at 2:40 pm

    ingenious design angel LOL

    I’d like to get a 30″ display but mac pro is way too expensive to match with it. I was thinking of going with iMac instead of macbook. Do you think there will be a 30″ iMac anytime soon?

  • mee says:
    Jan 16, 2008 at 12:01 pm

    I’ve got a Mac and I’m working with Parallels. So I can install Windows XP, Vista, … for evey OS I got my “programm”. That give’s me the flexibility I want to test the websites on every Plattform and every Browser.
    And by the way, according to many PC-Magazines, Apple Computers are the fastes to run Windows on it … ;-)

  • Jack Franklin says:
    Jan 23, 2008 at 1:08 pm

    If you want to test in all browsers, try browsershots.org

  • Luc says:
    Feb 1, 2008 at 8:23 pm

    Gavin, I tried to install Virtual PC 2007 just now. It doesn’t on Vista Basic. It’s not supported just like what Microsoft said on their site.

  • Rocco says:
    Mar 10, 2008 at 11:28 pm

    I know that you can’t run VPC 2007 right now, but if you ever can get to that point, I would try this out:


    Microsoft has a pre-activated Windows XP Pro disk image to use with Virtual PC 2007 just for web browser testing. It contains IE6, IE7 and IE8 on downloadable images. Its pretty cool. If you are in to that kind of thing. :)

  • Joro Yordanov says:
    Apr 7, 2008 at 2:17 am

    Hello, Luc, people.
    And I had the same problem, but i`ve found IETester and it works perfect under Windows Vista – http://www.my-debugbar.com/wiki/IETester/HomePage.
    Best regards,
    Joro Yordanov

  • Luc says:
    Apr 7, 2008 at 6:59 am

    Thanks Joro! That’s cool, I’ll check on it. :)

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