Friday, 9 September 2016

Batch validation of HTML as part of your web testing with Total Validator

TLDR; Total Validator Pro will spider a site and check its HTML as well as links. Free version works 1 page at a time. 30 GBP for the pro version.

I started using Total Validator Pro as well as the w3 validator (the API which powers the ‘validate’ function in Charles).
I wanted to add a ‘batch’ checking into my HTML validation process.
And Total Validator Pro seemed pretty simple, cheap and cross platform, so I tried it out.


Running Total Validator Pro against a local site

Total Validator Pro had issues connecting to localhost:666 where my site was running via the phpstorm web server.
I’m sure this is some strange Windows config that I haven’t figure out. So I used Fiddler and scanned ipv6.fiddler:666 rather than localhost:666 (I tried my IP addresses, and machine name, and switching off the firewall… but this worked, so I stopped investigating at this point when I had a workaround using Fiddler).

Total Validator Pro is a tough validator

Total Validator Pro was tougher on my page than the w3 validator.
The w3 validator allows:
  • {background-color: grey}
But Total Validator said no.
And if I look on the spec:
Then it does seem that ‘grey’ should now be ‘gray’ or the hex value #808080.

Total Validator Pro

Total Validator Pro will also check links as it checks the pages and I’m finding this useful as well.
The free version of Total Validator Pro will only check one page at a time. The paid version of Total Validator Pro (£30) will spider the site and check all the pages that it finds.

Set the Threads

Remember to toggle down the thread count from 100 if you start seeing errors during the scan.
  • Links > Other Options > Concurrency
I set this to 10 for some sites which seemed unable to handle the load.

Total Validator Pro is now part of my HTML validation process

I’ll be sticking with Total Validator Pro for batch checking, and using it to bolster my link checking.
Hopefully I’ll be able to use Charles during the exploratory testing and Total Validator Pro for my batch checking.
What do you use to validate the HTML when you are testing?

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