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how can I beta test in multiple environments?

I just released my beta software on this forum but turns out there are lots of bugs in the program that I dont see on my developement system.. I dried on 4 other PCs all seems fine.

however fellow programmers here found some nasty bugs in the program that prevented things from working.

any tips on how to test the program ouside of the developement environment to find major bugs?

Need help on Beta Test tips.
Friday, October 27, 2006
I only skimmed the previous post but I assume you'd need VMWare or Virtual PC. Have a clean install of all the OS's that you intend to support, and with each sevice pack. Not sure how you go about getting a Japanese XP though. Don't forget to have a VM with both US and UK regional settings to test any date sorting etc.
James Lee Send private email
Saturday, October 28, 2006
sevice pack -> SERVICE pack, doh.
James Lee Send private email
Saturday, October 28, 2006
Well there's more to testing than VMs.

If this is anything but an in house application you'll find that you CAN'T test it thoroughly yourself.  Even if you do your testing in both workgroup and AD environments under admin and normal users.  There are a million ways that corporate box jockeys might set Big Brother policies to disable random sets of system functionality.  Varying interlocked sets of "malware protection" tools can also throw extra jokers into the deck.

And then there are the individual users themselves... you know the ones.  They read those chain emails instructing them to disable any number of random system services, in the vain attempt to supress "The Nanny Trojan" - you know the one: it causes files to be erased rather than moved to the Recycle Bin if you happen to be holding down a Shift key.
Slim Simi
Saturday, October 28, 2006
I would also test with the major software installed. The sort that integrate extensively with the system:
- MS Office
- Norton Antivirus
- McAfee Antivirus
- Anti spyware of any kind
- Acrobat Reader
- etc...

And most importantly, test with a normal user account (i.e. not administrator)
Saturday, October 28, 2006
Create a text file questionaire and ask people to fill it out and send it to you.

Ask all of the relevent environment questions, and you should see some patterns emerge that will help you pinpoint the problem areas.
Saturday, October 28, 2006
I should clarify:
"skimmed the previous post" -> skimmed your previous post in the other forum -

Does it run in a clean install of XP? That would be my start.
MS Office is another issue as Adrian pointed out -
Are you using late binding? (if applicable to your language)
James Lee Send private email
Sunday, October 29, 2006

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