Getting Internet Explorer to Crash

By | July 22, 2006

I’ve been developing websites for quite some time now and I consider myself to have a real thorough understanding of how to write good HTML code. But lately I’ve found myself wondering if IE (Internet Explorer) hates me!

Why am I saying this, well the following is the case. I’ve got a pretty big web project in the workings and most of it works fine in both Firefox and IE. But I got reports back from some of my testers (more like volunteers) that the website kept crashing their browser. First thing I did was check it out. I couldn’t find it so at first I thought it to be a fluke, but these guys kept reporting the same thing. Specific pages were crashing IE. Just about half of the pages!

After some talking with the testers and some trial and error I finally got IE to crash. I loaded a perfectly OK page, completely XML1.0 Strict valid. And IE decided to tell me to go and ***** myself.

IE Notification of my crash

Nice, but vague, report of IE

So what was the reason for the crash? I don’t know exactly. What I do know is that it only happens when you have both IE and some form of Visual Studio Debugger installed. My guess is that the debugger somehow interferes in the parser of IE. Some specific order of elements(like div, b) cause this parser to crash. Note that it only seems to happen in combination with the CSS styles I’m using.

First I thought it was because the pages in question were using tables inside div layers, which is not a nice way of programming. But after changing this to full div lay-out and validating it with W3.org the damn thing still crashed.

Granted the point of the crash is know different. It only happens when you try and select the text, but it is still annoying to crash browsers. The positive spin I’m giving it right now is that it is a copy protection method, which is a load of crap.

Round up
So what’s my conclusion of this. I’m afraid I don’t know what to do at this point. I can’t seem to find the exact cause for IE to crash. Other then that it is a combination of the Visual Studio Debugger and IE(all versions by the way). Guess I have a lot more debugging to do to try and figure this one out.

Oh and if any of you had the same experience, or better yet solved it. Please let me know! I’m dying to solve this one.

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