BrowserSim FAQ

Q: What is BrowserSim ?

A: BrowserSim is a Browser Simulator which primarily is intended for having a quick, easy and multi-platform way of testing if your webapp will render and behave correctly on a mobile device.

 

Q: How does BrowserSim works ?

A: It wraps a WebKit browser and makes it respond and send work like a mobile browser by spoofing content and media request headers.

 


Q: What do I need to run BrowserSim?

A: The requirements for different platforms are as listed below:

  • Windows:
    • Only 32-bit Eclipse/JBDS is supported;
    • JBoss Tools 4.0.0.Beta2/JBDS 6.0.0.Beta2 and below: Apple QuickTime 7.72.80.56 or iTunes 10.6.3 must be installed (they contain Apple Application Support 2.1 which provides WebKit engine for BrowserSim). Also see this jira.
    • JBoss Tools 4.0.0.CR1/JBDS 6.0.0.CR1 and above: Apple Safari must be installed (it provides WebKit engine for BrowserSim).
  • Linux:
    • WebKitGTK 1.2.0 or newer must be installed and available in the library load path.
    • This should be available on RHEL and Ubuntu by default, if not use your package manager to install libwebkitgtk
  • Mac OS X
    • It just works.

 

Q: How to add BrowserSim to the toolbar?

A: Go to Window → Customize Perspective and select "BrowserSim" under "Command Groups Availability". Then it becomes available in the global toolbar via the "phone" icon:

browsersim-enabled.png

 

Q: Can I use the browser as a replacement for testing on a real phone or emulator?

A: Browsersim make it easy to test basic layout questions/issues on any platform without having to install a platform specifc emulator or manually try use a phone.

That said it is not 100% reliable since there are so many different brands/versions of phones there will be differences in behavior, thus no, BrowserSim does not replace real or emulated phone testing.

For full verfication/testing you should test on a real phone.

 

Q: BrowserSim shows an error message saying that JRE 7 is not supported on Windows and does not run (with JBoss Tools 4.0.0.Alpha2 and above).

A: There is an incompatibility between some versions of JRE 7 and BrowserSim on Windows. To workaround this, please do the following:

  1. Install JRE/JDK 6 or JDK 7 (but not JRE 7).
  2. Add the next lines at the beginning of your eclipse.ini or jbdevstudio.ini:

-vm

PATH_TO_JAVA_INSTALLATION_DIRECTORY\bin\javaw.exe

 

Q: BrowserSim shows the "No more handles [Failed to load the swt-webkit library]" error message and does not run (with JBoss Tools 4.0.0.Alpha1 and below).

A: There is an incompatibility between some versions of JRE/JDK 7 and BrowserSim on Windows. To workaround this, please do the following:

  1. Install JRE/JDK 6 (but not JRE/JDK 7).
  2. Add the next lines at the beginning of your eclipse.ini or jbdevstudio.ini:

-vm

PATH_TO_JAVA_INSTALLATION_DIRECTORY\bin\javaw.exe

 

Q: How can I launch BrowserSim without firing up eclipse?

A: We are considering to create a Jenkins build for standalone BrowserSim in the future. For now you may use the following steps to build it manually:

  1. git clone git://github.com/jbosstools/jbosstools-vpe.git
  2. cd jbosstools-vpe/products
  3. mvn clean install
  4. Run BrowserSim:
    • Windows/Linux: java -jar browsersim-standalone/target/application/browsersim.jar
    • Mac OS X: java -XstartOnFirstThread -jar browsersim-standalone/target/application/browsersim.jar