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Web Development in Linux


There are a lot of great tools available for web developers in Linux. I recently put a fresh install of Kubuntu on my laptop. After getting Quicken and some other programs working in Wine, I decided not to install Virtualbox with Windows XP. However, I would like to test websites in Internet Explorer or other native Windows browsers, because the fonts generally appear bigger in Windows and this can sometimes screw up a layout. I know about ies4linux and also, I am able to run IE6 after getting it installed with winetricks.

So, the crux of the situation is that I want to keep the default fonts that come bundled with Linux so I can see what most Linux visitors see (this rules out installing msttcorefonts). But, I also want to see a pixel-perfect rendering of what most Windows visitors will see, without going through the whole rigamarole of installing Virtualbox with Windows XP.

Is there any way to test and see what a website will look like in Windows while without installing a Windows emulator?


  • kryptikos
    I use the firefox add on "IE Tab". The bad thing is that addon is only for Windows systems. The good news is the community has posted work arounds for this via WINE. Here are the links. Perhaps this can help?



  • i92guboj
    It doesn't really matter what tricks do you use. Wine will never render the fonts 1:1 like Windows does. To do so would only be possible if MS liberated their font rendering engine so the wine programmers can integrate it inside wine.

    Firefox doesn't render the fonts itself, no program does nowadays, that's what X, fontconfig, libXfont and such things are there for. It would be completely dumb if every program reinvented the wheel.

    Wine, if my memory serves correctly, renders the fonts using freetype2, libXft and libXrender, in other words, the same bits and pieces that most of the rest of the X based programs, so it will never render the fonts like in windows 1:1

    Or course, it can be used to get *a taste* of how it will look in windows, but not as a 1:1 perfect copy.
  • You have already received some great advice. I still go to browsershots.org to see my site render in different os(s) and browsers. Easier than VMware (or equivalents), dual partitions etc.. and it works!!
  • altNull
    In reality, since Linux users typically do not use IE or most Microsoft products, then you really should not try looking at your website through IE in Linux. Going through the hassle of setting up Vbox with every type of OS is eventually rewarding. While you can do your development within Linux, you should always test the website with every browser on every OS, or get a lacky to do it for you.


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