quirks mode and IE5 vs IE6

Discussion in 'HTML' started by Jeff Thies, Feb 12, 2004.

  1. Jeff Thies

    Jeff Thies Guest

    Well, it's probably past time for me to regularly include doctype in my
    html.

    What is quirks mode and how do I avoid it. I seem to recall a specific url
    is required.

    What is the suggested doctype for html4.0 transitional? That's probably what
    I'm writing.

    Also, what's the differences between IE5(windows) and IE6?

    I don't have IE6, but usually what I write looks very similar in IE5, Opera7
    and NS7.1. Sometimes IE5 mac looks a bit different although Safari is good.
    What do I need to worry about in IE6?

    Cheers,
    Jeff
     
    Jeff Thies, Feb 12, 2004
    #1
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  2. Jeff Thies

    Neal Guest

    Neal, Feb 12, 2004
    #2
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  3. Jeff Thies wrote:
    > Well, it's probably past time for me to regularly include doctype in my
    > html.


    Umm... very much so.

    > What is quirks mode and how do I avoid it. I seem to recall a specific url
    > is required.


    Quirks mode is when a browser emulates the stupid mistakes of its
    predecessors so code written to love their errors doesn't fall apart.

    http://gutfeldt.ch/matthias/articles/doctypeswitch.html

    > What is the suggested doctype for html4.0 transitional? That's probably
    > what I'm writing.


    HTML 4.01 Transitional isn't suggested, for modern webpages HTML 4.01 Strict
    is the most apropriate.

    http://www.w3.org/QA/2002/04/valid-dtd-list.html

    > Also, what's the differences between IE5(windows) and IE6?


    IE6 has fewer bugs and fewer massive secuity holes.


    --
    David Dorward <http://dorward.me.uk/>
     
    David Dorward, Feb 12, 2004
    #3
  4. Martin Honnen, Feb 12, 2004
    #4
  5. Jeff Thies

    Jeff Thies Guest

    > > What is quirks mode and how do I avoid it. I seem to recall a specific
    url
    > > is required.

    >
    > Quirks mode is when a browser emulates the stupid mistakes of its
    > predecessors so code written to love their errors doesn't fall apart.
    >
    > http://gutfeldt.ch/matthias/articles/doctypeswitch.html


    This is what I've summarized. Let me know what I have wrong.

    Quirks mode in IE6 and fullstandards mode in Mozilla (NS7 also?) is turned
    on by include a full HTML4 doc type *with* a url. There is no full standards
    mode in IE5.

    IE6 quirks mode is mostly about nesting boxes and inheriting border widths
    and padding.

    Mozilla quirks mode is about emulating NS4!

    There is no rendering difference between HTML4 strict and loose at present.

    Now if I can just get rid of the occaisional center tag I have to use in
    IE5, I'd be HTML4 strict!

    Cheers,
    Jeff


    >
    > > What is the suggested doctype for html4.0 transitional? That's probably
    > > what I'm writing.

    >
    > HTML 4.01 Transitional isn't suggested, for modern webpages HTML 4.01

    Strict
    > is the most apropriate.
    >
    > http://www.w3.org/QA/2002/04/valid-dtd-list.html
    >
    > > Also, what's the differences between IE5(windows) and IE6?

    >
    > IE6 has fewer bugs and fewer massive secuity holes.
    >
    >
    > --
    > David Dorward <http://dorward.me.uk/>
     
    Jeff Thies, Feb 12, 2004
    #5
  6. Jeff Thies

    Steve Pugh Guest

    "Jeff Thies" <> wrote:

    >This is what I've summarized. Let me know what I have wrong.
    >
    >Quirks mode in IE6 and fullstandards mode in Mozilla (NS7 also?) is turned
    >on by include a full HTML4 doc type *with* a url.


    Not quite. With HTML 4.01, all Strict Doctypes trigger standards mode;
    Transitional doctypes with a URL trigger standards mode; Transitional
    doctypes without a URL trigger quirks mode.

    Recations to HTML 4.0 and XHTML 1.0 doctypes are slightly different.

    >There is no full standards mode in IE5.


    Correct, there is no doctype sniffing in IE5.x. It only has one
    rendering mode, and that is what is being simulated in IE6 quirks
    mode.

    >IE6 quirks mode is mostly about nesting boxes and inheriting border widths
    >and padding.


    Mostly, yes. It also determines other things, such as whether
    font-size: medium; is taken as the browser default or one size larger.

    Opera 7 also uses doctype sniffing. Its quirks mode is an attempt to
    emulate IE behaviour; hence it introduces bugs that Opera 6 did not
    have.

    >Mozilla quirks mode is about emulating NS4!


    No. See http://mozilla.org/docs/web-developer/quirks/quirklist.html

    The quirks are mostly minor details of CSS and HTML that most browsers
    have historically gotten wrong.

    >There is no rendering difference between HTML4 strict and loose at present.


    This is why doctype sniffing is bogus - the rendering mode has nothing
    to do with the HTML code used, just with what label is stuck on top of
    it.
    For example: The same code can validate as both Strict and
    Transitional (as Strict is a subset of Transitional).
    If the doctype is changed from <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML
    4.01 Transitional//EN"> to <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML
    4.01//EN"> then the rendering mode changes from Standards to Quirks.

    >Now if I can just get rid of the occaisional center tag I have to use in
    >IE5, I'd be HTML4 strict!


    Centering with CSS is generally possible in IE5, though it does mean
    taking advantage of a bug in IE's CSS support. What's the exact
    problem?

    Steve

    --
    "My theories appal you, my heresies outrage you,
    I never answer letters and you don't like my tie." - The Doctor

    Steve Pugh <> <http://steve.pugh.net/>
     
    Steve Pugh, Feb 12, 2004
    #6
  7. Jeff Thies

    GD Guest

    Steve Pugh <> wrote:
    > >There is no full standards mode in IE5.


    > Correct, there is no doctype sniffing in IE5.x. It only has one
    > rendering mode, and that is what is being simulated in IE6 quirks
    > mode.


    That applies to IE for Windows but IE5 for Mac does Doctype sniffing (I
    think it was the first 'big' browser to do so?) and will get the box
    sizes right in strict mode. It also supports the proposed CSS3 property
    to select the method of calculating box sizes for each selector.

    Although quirks mode in IE6 is supposed to make it compatible with IE5,
    I have found that this is often not the case, at least not for IE5.0 on
    Windows. I've often tested pages in IE6 in quirks mode and they looked
    ok, but when IE5.0 loaded them they *seriously* broke. IE6 seems to
    simulate basic things like the broken box model but there are other IE5
    nasties it doesn't mimic.

    I've never been motivated enough to look into it in detail. I just hope
    people have learned from the nightmare of trying to support NS4 for so
    long that it's not worth the hassle, especially when the users are just
    too lazy to upgrade to IE6 or a better browser. I doubt anyone can cite
    resource issues as the reason for sticking with IE5.

    As has been the case with NS4 (or even still is for some), as long as
    sites keep working with IE5 why will people ever be motivated to
    upgrade? From their point of view there's no problem with IE5 - it
    works.
     
    GD, Feb 12, 2004
    #7
  8. Jeff Thies

    DU Guest

    Jeff Thies wrote:
    > Well, it's probably past time for me to regularly include doctype in my
    > html.
    >
    > What is quirks mode and how do I avoid it. I seem to recall a specific url
    > is required.
    >
    > What is the suggested doctype for html4.0 transitional? That's probably what
    > I'm writing.
    >
    > Also, what's the differences between IE5(windows) and IE6?
    >


    MSIE 5.x for windows does not implement any kind of differentiated
    rendering mode. The good news is that with time people do upgrade their
    browser. MSIE 6 for windows beta 1 was released in march 2001 IIRC.

    > I don't have IE6, but usually what I write looks very similar in IE5, Opera7
    > and NS7.1. Sometimes IE5 mac looks a bit different although Safari is good.
    > What do I need to worry about in IE6?
    >
    > Cheers,
    > Jeff
    >
    >


    I recommend you always use a strict definition because in all browsers
    supporting standards compliant rendering mode, a doctype declaration
    with the strict definition always trigger standards compliant rendering
    mode.

    DOCTYPEs that will trigger standards compliant behavior in Opera 7, IE6
    for Windows, and Netscape 7:
    http://www.opera.com/docs/specs/doctype/

    There are other related benefits to using a strict definition.
    The most important benefits you get when triggering standards compliant
    rendering mode in MSIE 6 for windows are
    - correct implementation of the CSS1 box model: MSIE 6 in backward
    compatible rendering mode still incorrectly implements the CSS1 box model
    - faster parsing and faster rendering of pages (assuming your markup is
    error-free: best is to use the W3C validator)
    - rendering is closer, more consistent to what other W3C web standards
    compliant browsers render and this should stay that way or get further
    improved with time as browser manufacturers are aiming to support web
    standards and they work on eradicating browser bugs

    DU
     
    DU, Feb 12, 2004
    #8
  9. Jeff Thies

    Jeff Thies Guest

    <snip>

    > Although quirks mode in IE6 is supposed to make it compatible with IE5,
    > I have found that this is often not the case, at least not for IE5.0 on
    > Windows. I've often tested pages in IE6 in quirks mode and they looked
    > ok, but when IE5.0 loaded them they *seriously* broke.


    Like how? Overwritting content?


    >IE6 seems to
    > simulate basic things like the broken box model but there are other IE5
    > nasties it doesn't mimic.
    >
    > I've never been motivated enough to look into it in detail. I just hope
    > people have learned from the nightmare of trying to support NS4 for so
    > long that it's not worth the hassle, especially when the users are just
    > too lazy to upgrade to IE6 or a better browser. I doubt anyone can cite
    > resource issues as the reason for sticking with IE5.
    >
    > As has been the case with NS4 (or even still is for some), as long as
    > sites keep working with IE5 why will people ever be motivated to
    > upgrade? From their point of view there's no problem with IE5 - it
    > works.


    Well you know, we have to support the major browsers. I was just recentlay
    able to give up on NS4. Last year I had to download. NS4.5 in addition to
    NS4.7 because it worked differently in that browser!

    I'd love to give up on IE5, any idea what the IE5 market share is?

    Is IE5 Mac closer to IE6 windows or IE5 windows?

    You know how tough it is to have two versions of IE on a windows box!

    Jeff
    >
     
    Jeff Thies, Feb 12, 2004
    #9
  10. Jeff Thies wrote:

    > I'd love to give up on IE5, any idea what the IE5 market share is?


    In my experience, about 5% and IE 5.5 at about 7%, but both are falling.

    --
    Toby A Inkster BSc (Hons) ARCS
    Contact Me - http://www.goddamn.co.uk/tobyink/?page=132
     
    Toby A Inkster, Feb 12, 2004
    #10
  11. Jeff Thies

    GD Guest

    Jeff Thies <> wrote:
    > > I've often tested pages in IE6 in quirks mode and they looked
    > > ok, but when IE5.0 loaded them they *seriously* broke.


    > Like how? Overwritting content?


    Positioning elements in the wrong place or rendering the wrong width are
    the main things. I've noticed that on some pages if I use absolute
    positioning and set the element width to 100% then IE5 doesn't equate
    that with 100% of the window. If there isn't enough text in the main
    area to go accross the screen and wrap then the positioned element ends
    up as wide as the text. There should be no relationship between a
    positioned element and the length of a line of text in a normal element,
    especially when the main box isn't a parent of the positioned box.

    > > As has been the case with NS4 (or even still is for some), as long as
    > > sites keep working with IE5 why will people ever be motivated to
    > > upgrade? From their point of view there's no problem with IE5 - it
    > > works.


    > Well you know, we have to support the major browsers.


    True, but there's a difference between making sure the site works ok,
    and worrying about evey last pixel. For instance, adding padding and
    margin to inline elements can be very useful, especially on navigation
    bars where you want to space out links but not use a table. IE5 can't
    render the padding or margin so the links will be closer together, but
    it hardly breaks the site. If the user wants it prettier they should
    have the decency to upgrade. I'm not even wanting people to change to an
    alternative browser like Mozilla or Opera, just a version of their
    'free' browser that came out in the last 3 years!


    > Is IE5 Mac closer to IE6 windows or IE5 windows?


    Closer to IE6 but better :) They're totally different layout engines so
    IE for Mac has its own set of bugs. Floating is broken but in a
    different way from IE5 on Windows and it doesn't seem to combine line
    height, padding and margin correctly on inline elements. But apart from
    that it renders closer to Opera 6 than any other browser, at least in my
    experience. Maybe it's different with tag soup ;) It does fixed
    positioning, child and adjacent CSS selectors and even allows the
    contents of positioned elements to break out without clipping them,
    something IE for Windows does to annoy me, personally!
     
    GD, Feb 12, 2004
    #11
  12. Jeff Thies

    Eric Bohlman Guest

    "GD" <> wrote in news::

    > I've never been motivated enough to look into it in detail. I just hope
    > people have learned from the nightmare of trying to support NS4 for so
    > long that it's not worth the hassle, especially when the users are just
    > too lazy to upgrade to IE6 or a better browser. I doubt anyone can cite
    > resource issues as the reason for sticking with IE5.


    If "anyone" means "any autonomous individual in complete control of his
    computer setup" you're probably right. But consider a large corporate
    setting with tens of thousands of users all using IE5. In that case, an
    upgrade is a pretty massive undertaking, especially considering all the
    Intranet application that would have to be tested with the new browser to
    make sure they don't break. There's a good reason why large organizations
    seldom have bleeding-edge technology.
     
    Eric Bohlman, Feb 12, 2004
    #12
  13. Jeff Thies

    Karl Smith Guest

    "GD" <> wrote:

    > Steve Pugh <> wrote:
    > > >There is no full standards mode in IE5.

    >
    > That applies to IE for Windows but IE5 for Mac does Doctype sniffing (I
    > think it was the first 'big' browser to do so?) and will get the box
    > sizes right in strict mode. It also supports the proposed CSS3 property
    > to select the method of calculating box sizes for each selector.


    Opera 7, and I believe Mozilla too, implement the "box-sizing"
    property. IIRC, it is no longer officially a CSS3 proposal, more
    recent CSS3 drafts saying the need for such a property is obviated,
    now that "all major browsers" implement the CSS box model similarly.
     
    Karl Smith, Feb 13, 2004
    #13
  14. Jeff Thies wrote:

    > Well, it's probably past time for me to regularly include doctype in my
    > html.
    >
    > What is quirks mode and how do I avoid it. I seem to recall a specific url
    > is required.
    >
    > What is the suggested doctype for html4.0 transitional? That's probably what
    > I'm writing.
    >
    > Also, what's the differences between IE5(windows) and IE6?
    >
    > I don't have IE6, but usually what I write looks very similar in IE5, Opera7
    > and NS7.1. Sometimes IE5 mac looks a bit different although Safari is good.
    > What do I need to worry about in IE6?
    >
    > Cheers,
    > Jeff
    >
    >


    May I ask you why don't you use IE6? When I have to use IE5 in some
    client's office, I suffer a lot. It renders incorrectly lots of pages
    and I can't stand that... I can't understand why people doesn't use IE6
    if it's safer, faster, more compatible with standards...

    So, please, can you tell me why are you still using IE5?

    Or, if anyone has reasons, I'd greatly appreciate if you share them with me.

    Cheers,
    Andrés
     
    =?ISO-8859-1?Q?Andr=E9s_Sedano?=, Feb 14, 2004
    #14
  15. Jeff Thies

    Jeff Thies Guest

    <snip>

    > May I ask you why don't you use IE6? When I have to use IE5 in some
    > client's office, I suffer a lot. It renders incorrectly lots of pages
    > and I can't stand that...


    Gee, could that be it?

    I can't author something that may be badly broken in a mainstream browser,
    even if it is that browsers fault.

    >I can't understand why people doesn't use IE6
    > if it's safer, faster, more compatible with standards...


    By the same token, why use IE at all? If I'm browsing for my own purposes, I
    don't use IE.

    >
    > So, please, can you tell me why are you still using IE5?


    Because my clients would go balistic if 18% of their audience had serious
    problems with their site and I wasn't even aware of it! It's really the
    difference between authoring for yourself, and authoring for a living. If
    site appearance is important, and it is for my clients, this goes triple.

    I'm just glad I don't have to support NS4 anymore!

    Cheers,
    Jeff

    > Or, if anyone has reasons, I'd greatly appreciate if you share them with

    me.
    >
    > Cheers,
    > Andrés
     
    Jeff Thies, Feb 14, 2004
    #15
  16. Jeff Thies wrote:

    >> So, please, can you tell me why are you still using IE5?

    >
    > Because my clients would go balistic if 18% of their audience had serious
    > problems with their site and I wasn't even aware of it!


    That is a good reason to test pages in IE5.

    It leaves two questions. Why do you not test your pages in Internet Explorer
    6? Why do you not use IE6 for normal use (or better yet, a decent browser
    like FireFox)?

    --
    David Dorward <http://dorward.me.uk/>
     
    David Dorward, Feb 14, 2004
    #16
  17. Jeff Thies

    Eric Bohlman Guest

    "Jeff Thies" <> wrote in
    news:7DnXb.4391$:

    >> So, please, can you tell me why are you still using IE5?

    >
    > Because my clients would go balistic if 18% of their audience had
    > serious problems with their site and I wasn't even aware of it! It's
    > really the difference between authoring for yourself, and authoring
    > for a living. If site appearance is important, and it is for my
    > clients, this goes triple.


    And it's important to remember that many viewers may be using IE5 because
    it's what's installed on the machine that they're using and because the
    machine isn't their *personal* machine, they *can't* upgrade the browser.
     
    Eric Bohlman, Feb 14, 2004
    #17
  18. Jeff Thies

    Jeff Thies Guest

    > >> So, please, can you tell me why are you still using IE5?
    > >
    > > Because my clients would go balistic if 18% of their audience had

    serious
    > > problems with their site and I wasn't even aware of it!

    >
    > That is a good reason to test pages in IE5.
    >
    > It leaves two questions. Why do you not test your pages in Internet

    Explorer
    > 6?


    Probably because I do no want to dual boot and I know what it looks like
    elsewhere.

    > Why do you not use IE6 for normal use (or better yet, a decent browser
    > like FireFox)?


    I rather like NS7.1. Not familiar with FireFox.

    Cheers,
    Jeff
    >
    > --
    > David Dorward <http://dorward.me.uk/>
     
    Jeff Thies, Feb 14, 2004
    #18
  19. Barry Pearson, Feb 14, 2004
    #19
  20. On Sat, 14 Feb 2004, Eric Bohlman wrote:

    > And it's important to remember that many viewers may be using IE5 because
    > it's what's installed on the machine that they're using and because the
    > machine isn't their *personal* machine, they *can't* upgrade the browser.


    Sure. But conversely, it may be important to remember that there will
    be viewers using IE6 because _that's_ what's installed on their
    machine. So designing a page "to" the bugs of IE5 (which might have
    been corrected in later versions, but if the author doesn't have one
    then he won't necessarily know that) is not the answer, either.

    Unfortunately, it's a lot of fuss to maintain more than one version of
    Win IE. In fact, due to security concerns we get into trouble if we
    run old versions of IE on our network: updating to the latest MS
    fixes isn't an option - it's a requirement, in this context.
     
    Alan J. Flavell, Feb 14, 2004
    #20
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