Using the Internet Explorer Browser with WordPress
Internet Explorer (IE) is by far one of the most popular browsers because it’s part and parcel of all Microsoft Windows operating systems. Over the years, IE has struggled with its reputation of not keeping up, and being compliant, with web standards and CSS rendering that the development and design communities have come to love and expect from other browser systems. This is largely because of the layout engine in use at the foundation of IE and WordPress designers run into obstacles using IE.
One of the challenges that WordPress designers come across is the different versions of Internet Explorer that are widely used across the web. With each new version, Microsoft’s flagship browser comes closer and closer to compliance with open web standards. But because IE is the browser present with millions of operating systems across the world, not every individual user or company is quick to adopt the new versions as they are released. This results in several versions of IE in use across the world, and designers generally make an effort to make sure their designs render correctly on, at least, the last two to three recent versions of IE.
Currently, the versions of Internet Explorer that are supported by the majority of designers are versions 7 and 8, with most designers gradually dropping support for version 6 (commonly referred to as IE6). At the time of this writing, Microsoft has released version 9 beta, with the final version of IE9 expected to drop in late 2011 or early 2012.
Trying to test designs on different versions of Internet Explorer is difficult because attempting to install different versions on your computer can cause some big headaches and problems, if you don’t know exactly what you’re doing. For overall browser testing websites designed with WordPress, a tool called IETester comes in handy for specifically testing different IE versions.
You can test different IE versions with IETester. Buttons across the top are labeled for specific IE versions: IE5.5, IE6, IE7, and IE8.