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A company I work for wants to do cross browser testing. Are there any differences between rendering on Chrome for Linux and Chrome for Windows? Should I test both or one is just enough as UI elements won't differ, just minor font differences?

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I would not spend time for testing your look'n'feel on chrome for different platforms. Here is my justification:

  • This is more testing of chrome and Linux than testing your application.
  • If there would be the difference (what is highly unlikely) most probably your devs would not be able to fix this.
  • Algorithms which render the ui to the abstract screen that OS provides have to be identical for both chromes. All styles are to be displayed in the common way.
  • Linux GUI is less standardized that windows GUI. There are a lot of Linux distributives and a lot of Linux graphical shells so probably you underestimate the cost of such the testing.
  • Rendering of some components like video clips might depend more on the compatibility of the device's hardware and drivers the particular Linux distributive has installed. So you will probably have to test your app not only against several Linux distributives but also against several devices.

I would better put more effort to testing your app in the browsers of different vendors rather than testing it against the same browser but different platforms.

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Cross browser testing, to me, it is more about testing Chrome on Linux and Chrome on Windows:

  • You may need to test on various browsers such as, IE 11, Edge, Firefox, Safari and Chrome (even Opera if you have sufficient resources).

My suggestion is:

  • Ask your employer what the testing scopes are; if there is none, you can prioritise a testing scope based on which browser is the most used among this product's user, which OS is the most common among this product's user and etc.

From my personal experiences on browser testing, I will be looking at:

  • Do all UI elements present in all browsers under test? (Please ignore font, they usually do not matter.)
  • Do all UI elements behave the same way as expected?
  • Is there any console errors in any browser?

Please feel free to add your own testing ideas on my suggestions.

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