Hi everyone,

I would like to launch for discussion the issue on browser scalability with Outsystems.

How can we guarantee that our Apps are scalable to most browsers?

Where can we validate our browsers? Are there any built in mechanisms for validating browser scalability?

Best Regards,

Diogo C S Cordeiro
Hi Diogo

What do you mean by browser scalability? Do you, instead, mean browser compatibility?

If that's the case, in OutSystems applications you'll have to apply the same methods for browser compatibility testing that you apply with other web development tools. This means that you can:
  • test manually on each browser
  • use automated integrated testing tools such as selenium
  • use automated unit testing tools
The pros and cons of these three methods are as follows:

Manually testing on each browser
This is the only way under which you can ensure that things such as visual styles are not broken. Doing that automatically would require image comparison and there are no actually practical tools to do visual output testing. This is, therefore, the best way to verify that your applications work as expected in all the browsers, but has the obvious hassle that it introduces a huge amount of manual work. Due to this, usually people have a compromise attitude regarding manual testing: only basic features and recently modified or added items are manually tested, but manual testing is never discarded.

Using automated testing tools such as selenium
You can create selenium scripts for some browsers (at least both IE and Firefox are supported) and it runs in several operating systems. Though you can't check if your output is rendered as expected, you can check for some key elements in the markup or page contents so you may actually perform a lot of testing by using this kind of tools.

Automated unit testing tools
In browser testing, as far as I know, these apply only to javascript functions and are very limited. The practical use of these is mainly for JavaScript libraries or sites that are highly powered by javascript.

Regarding testing on multiple browsers, you may install several browser versions on every operating system, except for Internet Explorer, for which you can only have a single version installed at a time. Microsoft, however, has some freely available VirtualPC images with Windows XP and Vista and IE 6 and 7, so you can install IE8 but test on both its predecessors.

Some useful links to complement this post: Happy testing!