Friday, October 20th, 2006
Alex Russell ran into someone who didn’t test IE at an IE launch party?
In IE At Arms Length Alex talks about how he takes responsibility for testing the various versions of IE, even from a Mac.
- A high-end mac laptop, stuffed to the gills with RAM and a fast HD
- An external storage device of some sort. In my case, thatâ€™s a samba server with a half terabyte of fas RAID storage on switched gigabit ethernet
- Windows licenses. I use both Win2K and XP. I recommend older if you can get it, just because the older the Windows version, the less ram itâ€™ll soak up
- Virtualization software. These days Iâ€™m using Parallels, but previously Iâ€™ve used both VirtualPC and VMWare
Here’s how I set up my environment:
- Create a new VM. In it, install/register/jump-through-MS-hoops for the baseline version of all of the OSes you’re going to be using. Don’t even think of running windows update yet.
- Configure the VM to use the right local networking setup
- In this new VM, install the Microsoft Script Editor, Ethereal, Drip, the MS web developer toolbar and whatever other baseline debugging tools you use everywhere for IE
- Shut down this VM and copy it off to your mass storage device. Give it a name like “XP_baseline”
- For each OS Service Pack, do much the same thing. Install the service pack (avoiding browser upgrades if possible), shut the VM down, and pickle it off to cold storage
- Once you’ve got a VM with a pristine version of the last OS service pack, start doing the same thing, but with major browser revs. If you can’t find an installer for a particular IE rev, try the Evolt Browser Archive.
- At the end of the last step, you should have a “mostly” up-to-date version of both OS and browser. Once you’ve got a copy of that in cold storage, only then should you run Windows Update. Mmmm…watch that VM reboot!
- This is now your “working VM”. Keep it up to date as MS releases patches and such. For each new major browser rev, do NOT use this as your baseline. Instead, pull your last major browser/OS rev snapshot out of cold storage, copy it, upgrade the copy, and put that back in the drawer
Posted by Dion Almaer at 9:09 am