Match IE8 With Rework And Gulp!

Rework is a very powerful tool. It allows working with CSS contents in a friendly manner. Let's improve you IE8 compatibility with it.

I discovered Rework recently thanks to the Nicolas Gallagher recent blog post. It made me think about the recent ChtiJS build migration from Grunt to Gulp. One thing i did with our Grunt build was to create a IE8 specific CSS file by removing each rem units and replacing them with px units. It worked well but wasn't perfect since it didn't took in count the CSS syntax and could have lead to bugs for complex stylesheets.

On the other hand, give up rem units just for IE8 support is a bad idea. The rem unit system is really powerful when you want to size your contents. It gives you the em advantages without the well know nested em problems.

So i decided to create a Rework plugin in order to reproduce this behavior more safely. I called it rework-rem2px and you can already find it on NPM. It works well, but the IE specific stylesheet were still containing some extra code, especially media queries that old IE version doesn't understand.

Thanks to the community, something already exists. css-queryless remove media queries from a CSS file and also allows you to specify some expressions for wich you want to keep the media queries content in place that matches.

Ended up with this Gulp task:

 // CSS
gulp.task('build_styles', function(cb) {
var keepmatches = [
'screen and (min-width: 61rem)',
'print'
];

gulp.src(conf.src.less + '/main.less')
.pipe(g.less())
.pipe(g.autoprefixer())
.pipe(gulp.dest(conf.build.css))
.pipe(g.rework(queryless(keepmatches), rem2px(16)))
.pipe(g.rename({
suffix: '-ie'
}))
.pipe(gulp.dest(conf.build.css))
.once('end', cb);
});

Let me know you own tips to write modern CSS that work on IE8!

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