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Testing Assistive Technology for Compatibility with Microsoft Windows XP

Microsoft Accessible Technology Group

April 2002

Summary: This article prioritizes areas of the Microsoft Windows XP interface that can be tested to ensure compatibility between assistive technologies and Windows XP. (7 printed pages)

How to Test

To ensure compatibility between your assistive technology and Microsoft Windows XP, you need to confirm that assistive technology can work with the Windows XP user interface. To make such testing easier, the Microsoft Accessible Technology Group has prioritized the most important user interface features, as shown in the following table.

FeaturePriority

Features that are new or have a new user interface in Windows XP

- and -

Features that contain known software bugs in Microsoft Windows 2000.

- and -

Features that work fully in Windows 2000 but might not in Windows XP.

P1
Features that both work fully in Windows 2000 and are accessed frequently by users of assistive technology.P2
Features that work fully in Windows 2000 but are accessed infrequently by users of assistive technology.P3

 

At a minimum, test the user interface of each feature at its first and second levels. For example, in Control Panel, test all buttons and tabs in the DisplayProperties dialog box, and also test any dialog boxes that appear when you click a button in the Display Properties dialog box. You can test any dialog box that appears when you click the second level of buttons.

Tools that Aid Testing

Use the following tools to test your assistive technology:

  • Accessibility Event Watcher (AccEvent)—to monitor how your assistive technology supports WinEvents.
  • Inspect Object (Inspect)—to monitor how your assistive technology supports Microsoft Active Accessibility (MSAA) objects.
  • Accessible Explorer (AccExplorer)—to verify the MSAA object hierarchy.
  • Narrator—to compare the functionality of your screen reader to that of Narrator, which comes with Windows XP.
  • Magnifier—to compare the functionality of your screen magnifier to that of Magnifier, which comes with Windows XP.

Download AccEvent, Inspect, and AccExplorer.

What to Test

The most important areas of the Windows XP user interface to be tested include:

The following sections prioritize items within these test areas.

Testing Control Panel

Control Panel CategoryUser Interface TaskPriority
Appearance and Themes
  • Change the computer theme.
  • Change the screen resolution.
  • View Taskbar and Start Menu dialog box. Change to ClassicStart menu. Add folders and files.
  • Show most recently used documents.
  • View Folder Options dialog box.
  • View Display dialog box.
P1
Network and Internet ConnectionsSet up a network and Internet connection using your assistive technology.P2
Sounds, Speech and Audio DevicesChange voice speed.P2
Accessibility OptionsSelect High Contrast.P1
Add or Remove Programs
  • Add a program from Add New Programs.
  • Add a Windows component.
  • Remove a program.
P1
Printers and Other HardwareAdd a printer.P2
Performance and Maintenance
  • In the Administrative Tools folder, view Computer Management.
  • In the System folder, turn off automatic updating.
P1
User AccountsTest the user interface at its first and second levels.P1
Date, Time, Language, and Regional OptionsTest the user interface at its first and second levels.P3
Other Control Panel OptionsTest the user interface at its first and second levels.P3

 

Testing the Programs in Accessories

Confirm that your assistive technology works with the programs in the Accessories folder. The following table lists the programs to test.

Accessories ProgramPriority
Accessibility
  • Accessibility Wizard
  • Utility Manager
  • Magnifier
  • Narrator

P1

P1

P1

P1

Communications
  • Microsoft NetMeeting

P2

Entertainment
  • CD Player
  • Volume Control
  • Microsoft Windows Media Player

P2

P2

P2

System Tools
  • Disk Defragmenter
  • Disk Cleanup
  • Getting Started
  • System Information
  • System Restore

P2

P2

P2

P2

P1

CalculatorP1
Command PromptConsoleP1
NotepadP2
SynchronizeP2
WordPad (ToolTip functionality only)P1

 

Testing Other User Interface Areas Besides Control Panel and Accessories

The following table lists areas of the user interface other than Control Panel and Accessories. Perform the user interface tasks to confirm that your assistive technology works with Windows XP.

User Interface AreaUser Interface TaskPriority
Start Menu and Submenus
  • Use Windows Classic Start Menu.
  • Use Windows XP Start Menu.
P1
Turn Off Computer Turn off computer.P1
Log Off Dialog Box
  • Change user.
  • Clear Fast-User Switching check box.
P1
Explorer
  • Change views (Thumbnails, Tiles, Icons, List, Details).
  • Use Film Strip view (in My Picture).
  • View My Computer.
  • View Recycle Bin.
  • View My Documents.

P1

P1

P2

P2

P2

My Network PlaceTest the user interface at its first and second levels.P2
Help and Support CenterTest the user interface at its first and second levels.P1
Run in Compatibility Mode Test all features.P1
DesktopCreate shortcut on desktop.P2
Quick Launch, Applications Tray, and System Tray
  • Tab from Start menu for two cycles. Notice tab order.
  • Add application icons to Quick Launch until the More button appears. Use the keyboard to test the More button.
  • Make the More button appear in the System Tray. (In the Taskbar and Start Menu Properties dialog box, click Hide Inactive Icons.) Use the keyboard to browse items in the System Tray.
P1
Search
  • Search a file.
  • Search a computer.
  • Search a Web site.

P2

P3

P2

Run
  • Choose from the list box.
  • Launch an application, and test whether it is properly exposed.
  • Run Regedit.
  • Run Winver.
  • Run MMC.
  • Access a network share.

P1

P2

P3

P3

P1

P2

StartupMake sure all applications are accessible within the folder.P3

 

Testing Internet Explorer

The following table lists features related to Internet Explorer. Perform the user interface tasks to confirm that your assistive technology works with Windows XP.

Internet Explorer FeatureUser Interface TaskPriority
Microsoft Internet Connection Wizard
  • Establish a dial-up connection.
  • Establish a LAN connection.
P1
Microsoft Internet Explorer Browser
  • Make sure that links work.
  • Add to favorites, and organize favorites.
  • Save a Web page.
  • Tab quickly through all the links on a page.
  • Start Explorer from Quick Launch toolbar.
  • Access a URL using the Run command.
  • Make sure DHTML does not break MSAA objects.
  • Access embedded objects.
  • Access the Tree Control.
  • Access the Menu band.
  • Make sure that image maps work. (An image map consists of links behind different parts of an image.)
P1
Internet OptionsFrom the Accessibility tab, test the user interface at its first and second levels.P1
Microsoft Outlook ExpressTest the user interface at its first and second levels.P2
Windows Updates Test the user interface at its first and second levels.P3
Microsoft MSN ExplorerTest the user interface at its first and second levels.P1
Address BookTest the user interface at its first and second levels.P2
MSN Messenger ServiceTest the user interface at its first and second levels.P1
MSN SearchTest the user interface at its first and second levels.P2

 

 

 

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