For a long time now, I've been using Tredosoft's Multiple IEs. It's a great little package that allows you to run multiple versions of IE on the same machine, from IE 6.0 all the way back to IE 3.0! Okay, now no one is running IE 3.0 any more (I hope!) but from time to time, people want IE 5.5 support (still! yes, I know!) and certainly IE 6 is, unfortunately, still being used. Before I found the Multiple IEs package, I was considering running several virtual machines, each with a different version of IE installed. However, with Multiple IEs I can happily run all these old versions, alongside my IE 7 browser, on the one machine. As a web developer, this is an invaluable tool for cross-browser testing. Then came IE 8... Unfortunately, Multiple IEs is no longer supported (probably too much of a nightmare, I imagine) and it only includes versions up to IE 6. So to upgrade to IE 8, you would lose the ability to run IE 7, which as the most prevalent IE browser out there, isn't a good solution, or you would again need multiple machines running different versions of IE. Thankfully, I found out that the guys at Tredosoft, who provided the Multiple IEs package, also provided a IE 7 standalone app. It was originally intended to run alongside IE 6 for people who didn't want to upgrade to IE 7 at the time. Combining this standalone app with Multiple IEs is the perfect solution to my IE version woes. Well at least the IE woe described here. It can't fix everything! :) So if you want to run IE 3.0, IE 8 and all the versions in between, then here's the steps to get it working for you (tested on WinXP):
  • Upgrade your IE 7 to IE 8.
  • Download and install Tredosoft's IE 7 standalone version.
  • Download and install Tredosoft's Multiple IEs package.
The verdict: So far pretty much everything is working as before. The only issues I've encountered are right-mouse button clicks don't work in the IE 7 standalone app, and there isn't an IE 8 compatible version of the IE Developer toolbar. However, IE 8 is meant to come with new and improved developer tools, so hopefully I won't need it.