Thursday, December 30, 2010

Accessibility testing tools and resources - Section 508 and WCAG

In simple words Accessibility testing is a type of testing to make sure that your site can be accessed and used by everyone including people with disabilities. For this purpose all such sites in the United States needs to follow the "Web-based Intranet and Internet Information and Applications (1194.22)" of section 508.

Another guide to making a site accessible is to follow the "Web Content Accessibility Guidelines"(WCAG) by W3C. WCAG 1.0 was published in 1999,  WCAG 2.0 is the latest and it was published on 2008.

Before starting any accessibility testing my advice to you is to READ ALL THE STANDARDS THOROUGHLY. Believe me its worth it specially if this is the first time you are doing Accessibility testing. Another advice is when ever you come across a good site or resource make sure you bookmark it so that it can be accessed easily later on. (I recommend using Google Bookmarks).

Let me now share with you some of the useful resources I came across so that it will make life easy for you when you get to testing your site. If you do find this post useful please leave a comment.

Standards and Guidelines


Toolbars and Addons

Other Useful sites

Screen Readers

Hope you find this useful. Please do share your experience with the tools you have used so that others may benefit.

Happy Testing!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

How to use Alt + Ctrl + Del in a Windows Virtual machine

If you are in a console of  a Windows virtual machine hosted on the Virtual Center or ESX and want to use Alt + Ctrl + Del to unlock the screen, This is how you do it since hitting  Alt + Ctrl + Del will only lock your screen and not the virtual machine(That's frustrating, I know..)

So in a vSphere this is how you do it. Go to the console tab of the virtual machine and select Inventory > Virtual Machine > Guest > Send Alt+Ctrl+Del as shown in the image below.

Alt+Ctrl+Del in a Virtual Machine in VSphere

In remote desktop we should use Alt+Ctrl+End instead

Happy Testing!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

How to create dummy files in Linux

If your test case requires you to create a large dummy file or many dummy files in linux and Google or Yahoo landed you here, then you have come to the right place.

In Linux you can create a large file with just a one line command. Here's how.
Creating one large file

dd if=/dev/zero of=/home/1GBtestfile.img count=1000000 bs=1024
This will create a 1GB file named 1GBtestfile.img in the home directory

dd if=/dev/zero of=/50GBtestfile.img count=50000000 bs=1024
This will create a 50GB file named 50GBtestfile.img in the / or root directory

To check the size of the file which is being created, in a new ssh session type
du -hs /home/1GBtestfile.img

Creating many dummy files

Create a shell script named filecreator
# vi filecreator

Paste the following to create 10 files in the same directory
    for i in $(seq 0 10);
        echo -n "file${i} ";
        dd if=/dev/zero of=file${i} bs=1024 count=2 2>&1;

Wright and Quit by typing wq

Rename the file to a .sh file
# mv filecreator

Run the script

To count the number of files in a directory
# ls -l | wc -l

Happy Testing!!

Monday, August 9, 2010

How to deploy the “Which US President?” demo application from

This is how to deploy the "FindPres - Which US President?" application given in the OpenSTA site.

Step 1: Download and install XAMPP for Windows - Direct Link

Step 2: Download the “FindPres - Which US President?” application from

Step 3: Extract the zip file and your will get two files named “findpres.plx” and “potus.dat”

Step 4: Rename findpres.plx to

Step 5: Copy the two files “” and “potus.dat” and put it in to C:\xampp\htdocs folder

Step 6: In order for the database to retrieve results you need to do a slight modification in the file. You need to include the full path of the in database location and also escape the \ character. 

In Line 7 replace:
my $database="potus.dat"; With

my $database="C:\\xampp\\htdocs\\potus.dat";

Step 7: Launch XAMPP from the Desktop shortcut “XAMPP Control Panel and Start” and Start “Apache”

Step 8: In the browser go to http://localhost/

The Which US President? Application should be up now.

To Login type a name for the UserId and reverse it for the password
Eg: Login ID    : safraz
      Password  : zarfas

Thanks Koshika for helping me out on this one..

Happy Testing!!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Bug in Facebook login page

First of all I love Facebook. But this Facebook bug has been around for more than one and a half years now and sadly it has not been fixed even after informing Facebook in 2009 January under the subject "Resizing Welcome/Login page in Firefox-3 does not render the background". For a site used by millions of users daily, I was quite surprised to find this bug on Facebook's login/welcome page.

I checked this bug in Firefox 3.6, Internet Explorer 8 and Chrome 5, but I am sure this can be reproduced in all other browsers. Even thought the bug is in the login page, It's not a security threat of any sort and it seems to be a CSS styling issue.

Steps to reproduce:
1. Go to (if you are logged in to Facebook you need to log out first)
2. Make sure the browser is maximized and click on the "Restore Down" button next to the red close button on the top
3. Move the horizontal scroll bar to the right so that the Sign Up area can be seen.
4. BoooM!! Now you see that the background image does not get rendered. This make the input fields to look out of place.(See images below)

Current view of Facebook login page bug (2010-Aug)

Last year view of Facebook Login page bug (2009-Jan)

This is just one out of many Facebook bugs I have found, but I have no time to blog about it :)

Happy Testing!!