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Free HTML / CSS / Link Validation - Check for Errors, Standards Compliance, Broken Links

This page lists HTML validators (which check HTML code for standards compliance and errors), CSS validators (which check Cascading Style Sheets for errors and standards compliance), browser compatibility checkers (checks your page to see if it is compatible with various browsers), broken link (or dead links) checkers.

Why Validate Your HTML Code?

1. It Helps different browser, different platform and Future Compatibility - Although you may be able to create a web page that appears to work on your favourite browser your page may contain HTML errors (or CSS errors) that do not show up with that browser. If another person using a different browser viewing it, that page may does not show up correctly. It is also a form of insurance against future versions of browsers, since all browsers aim towards compliance with the existing HTML and CSS standards. When there are errors in a web page, browsers typically try to compensate in different ways.

2. Search Engine Visibility - The problem is that when search engines obtain your page and try to parse them for keywords, they will also have to make certain decisions about what to do with the errors. Like browsers, different search engines will probably make different decisions about those errors in the page, resulting in certain parts of your web page (or perhaps even the entire page if your error is early in the page) not being indexed.

3. Professionalism - The issue is two-fold: firstly, a poorly coded web page reveals that either the web designer does not know his stuff or is a sloppy worker; secondly, errors in your site reflect poorly on your skill as a web developer.

Writing valid HTML often seems like a nuisance, but one reason is if your site is moved into a database, valid HTML or really valid XHTML can become very important. Many CMS programs require valid XHTML because they are based on XML and installed in databases.

Online HTML validators validate pages that are already on the Web. They send the results to you via email, or do it immediately in your browser.




Free HTML Validators




Sponsors

Tool Description Type
W3C HTML Validation Service You can use the W3 Consortium's HTML validator to check your web documents either by giving it your web page's URL or uploading your document directly to the validator. Many people consider it the authoritative source for checking your web pages for standards compliance (since the W3 Consortium is responsible for the various HTML/CSS standards). Source code for the validator is also available.

Free
WDG HTML Validator The WDG Validator will check the syntactical correctness of your HTML to help you produce more accessible Web pages.

Free
Dr. Watson Dr. Watson is a free service to analyze your web page on the Internet. You give it the URL of your page and Watson will get a copy of it directly from the web server. Watson can also check out many other aspects of your site, including link validity, download speed, search engine compatibility, and link popularity.

Free
HTML Tidy (HTML Validator) HTML Tidy is not just a HTML validator for your web documents. It is able to correct (repair and fix) bad HTML code and give you pointers to areas where you need to change in order to make your web page accessible to people with disabilities. Source code and binaries are available for a wide variety of operating systems, including Windows 95/98/NT/2000, Mac OS, Atari, Amiga, BeOS, AIX, Linux, UnixWare, HP-UX, MSDOS, Solaris, OS/2, FreeBSD, RISC OS, MiNT (Atari) OS, etc. There is even a Java port of HTML Tidy.

Free
Tidy Online This is an online version of the HTML Tidy validator that you can use to clean up your web pages if you're too lazy to download your own copy.

Free
Web Page Purifier The Web Page Purifier allows you to check your HTML pages for compliance ("purity") with various HTML standards (eg HTML 4.0 Transitional, HTML 4.0 Strict, WebTV 1.1, HTML 3.2, etc). There's a form where you can enter the URL of the page to check, or you can also download the Perl CGI source code.

Free
A-Prompt A-Prompt is a Windows program that checks your pages for accessibility issues and fixes the pages for you (with your help). It has a Wizard-like interface which guides you through the individual (potential) problems that your web page may have and prompts you for information for repairing the page.

Free

Free Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) Validators

Tool Description Type
W3C CSS Validation Service This is the W3 Consortium's CSS validator for validating Cascading Style Sheets. You can either download it and use it on your own machine, upload your cascading style sheet (CSS) to their online service, or supply your URL for their spider to visit your site. The W3 Consortium is responsible for the various CSS and HTML standards.

Free
CSSCheck This is a validator for Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) that also looks into a few browser compatibility issues with your style sheet.

Free
xhtml-css This website helps you check the markup and style validity of your pages on the same time.

Free
cssvalidator CSE HTML Validator Std/Pro for Windows not only thoroughly checks HTML syntax, but also checks CSS syntax. That means it's not only an HTML validator, but also a CSS validator, in one product! CSE HTML Validator can check inline styles (the "style" attribute), the content of the "style" element, and external CSS style sheets. It can also check for broken links as well as for accessibility and search engine optimization issues. You get all of this and more in one powerful program.

Free/Commercial

Free Broken Links Validators

Tool Description Type
W3C CSS Validation Service This is the W3 Consortium's CSS validator for validating Cascading Style Sheets. You can either download it and use it on your own machine, upload your cascading style sheet (CSS) to their online service, or supply your URL for their spider to visit your site. The W3 Consortium is responsible for the various CSS and HTML standards.

Free
W3C Link Checker Worried about broken links in your web documents? This online validator from the W3 Consortium is able to recursively check your document for dead links. You simply enter a URL in the form provided, and it will visit your site and check the links.

Free
Xenu Link Sleuth Xenu is a utility for Windows that checks your web site for broken links. It can work both with a "live" website as well as on a copy of your web site residing on your own hard disk. It's a favourite of many webmasters for checking broken links on their site.

Free


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