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IE ok, but Netscape and Opera my site is a disaster!

I am confronted with the browser issue

4:50 am on May 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Any of you guys know where I can find info about the problems IE-developed sites run across when viewed under Netscape and Opera?

One of the issues is that it seems that these two don´t handle the <p>&nbsp;<p>&nbsp;<p>&nbsp;
the same way. What shall I do to make this work under Netscape and Opera?



4:59 am on May 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Administrator bill is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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A good first step is to run your HTML through an validator like these:
IE is very tolerant of bad code. Opera is a bit more strict.
2:02 pm on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Hello bill,

Thanks for the tip.

I am downloading the "real validator" to see it it gives me the answers. I have just submited the screwed-up-layout page through the online service of the #1 you gave me, and he points many errors, but none that could explain the difference in interpreting the <p>&nbsp;<p>&nbsp;<p>&nbsp;<p>&nbsp;

Is there something regarding these?


4:02 pm on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

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A belated welcome to Webmaster World, André.

Unsurprisingly Bill's comment is spot on and I can only add that it is interesting to see how many webmasters in the last few months are telling about the problems they are having because they have created their websites for IE and now realise that those websites do not look as expected in other browsers.

And now to your specific problem with <p>:

This tag is intended as a tool to help format a text. It is not intended to be used to design the look of a page. Now there is nothing inherently wrong with using a tool for something that it was not intended for, but if you do so you should be prepared for surprises.

I suggest that you start using CSS that has excellent tools for positioning.

And if you feel that learning CSS is a bit too much for such a simple task you might try something like this:


and specify the same colour for your "text" as for your background.

But most important of all: Do correct those errors. It is quite alright to create pages that do not validate if creating invalid code is necessary for the pages that you want to have, but this should be done as a conscious choice, not be a mistake.

5:52 pm on May 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Hey Nielsen,

Thanks for the welcome! I am happy to have found you guys! You have an excelent forum here.

I´m pretty much familiar with css, and use it a lot, but sometimes I have to provide different spacing to an element that is printed out through a perl sub - that´s my problem.

For example, the closing ruler and copyright, wich I call through print_ruler();

Then the code would be:

print "a lot of stuff - X";


In this case, I need a spacing element to place in X, and <p> was the solution our kind mister IE was telling me as perfect - thanks for the fantastic advice, Bill!

I supose the <p>.<p>.<p>. work just like <p>&nbsp;<p>&nbsp;<p>&nbsp; right? In this case the problem would persist, because Netscape (Opera is ok) seems to print out less pixels of spacing than IE.

I am thinking of using a table like this to provide this spacing feature I was trusting to <p>:

<table border=0><tr><td height=xx>&nbsp;</td></tr></table>

What do you think? Is this a good one?


6:55 pm on May 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I find that removing the doctype statement at the top of pages helps cut down on the problems. Many site (like google) don't use them. Just make <html> the first thing on your page. I also use tables and transparent .gif files when spacing is critical.
7:29 pm on May 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Hey geekgod,

Great to know that. I was kind of worried about having or not to set up this boring doctype definition.

And, yeah, transparent gifs are good idea too, for smaller spacing than the ones that require tables.

See ya around,


PS: Welcome to the forum, pal.