Some Cross-Browser DevTools Options You Would possibly Not Know | CSS-Methods







I spend a variety of time in DevTools, and I’m certain you do too. Typically I even bounce between them, particularly once I’m debugging cross-browser points. DevTools is quite a bit like browsers themselves — not all the options in a single browser’s DevTools would be the identical or supported in one other browser’s DevTools.

However there are fairly a couple of DevTools options which might be interoperable, even some lesser-known ones that I’m about to share with you.

For the sake of brevity, I take advantage of “Chromium” to seek advice from all Chromium-based browsers, like Chrome, Edge, and Opera, within the article. Lots of the DevTools in them supply the very same options and capabilities as each other, so that is simply my shorthand for referring to all of them directly.

Search nodes within the DOM tree

Typically the DOM tree is filled with nodes nested in nodes which might be nested in different nodes, and so forth. That makes it fairly robust to search out the precise one you’re in search of, however you possibly can shortly search the DOM tree utilizing Cmd + F (macOS) or Ctrl + F (Home windows).

Moreover, you may as well search utilizing a legitimate CSS selector, like .crimson, or utilizing an XPath, like //div/h1.

DevTools screenshots of all three browsers.
Looking out textual content in Chrome DevTools (left), selectors in Firefox DevTools (middle), and XPath in Safari DevTools (proper)

In Chromium browsers, the main focus robotically jumps to the node that matches the search standards as you sort, which could possibly be annoying if you’re working with longer search queries or a big DOM tree. Fortuitously, you possibly can disable this conduct by heading to Settings (F1) → PreferencesInternationalSearch as you sortDisable.

After you’ve situated the node within the DOM tree, you possibly can scroll the web page to deliver the node inside the viewport by right-clicking on the nod, and deciding on “Scroll into view”.

Showing a highlighted node on a webpage with a contextual menu open to scroll into view

Entry nodes from the console

DevTools offers many alternative methods to entry a DOM node immediately from the console.

For instance, you need to use $0 to entry the presently chosen node within the DOM tree. Chromium browsers take this one step additional by permitting you to entry nodes chosen within the reverse chronological order of historic choice utilizing, $1, $2, $3, and many others.

Currently selected node accessed from the Console in Edge DevTools

One other factor that Chromium browsers let you do is copy the node path as a JavaScript expression within the type of doc.querySelector by right-clicking on the node, and deciding on CopyCopy JS path, which may then be used to entry the node within the console.

Right here’s one other technique to entry a DOM node immediately from the console: as a brief variable. This feature is out there by right-clicking on the node and deciding on an possibility. That possibility is labeled in a different way in every browser’s DevTools:

  • Chromium: Proper click on → “Retailer as international variable”
  • Firefox: Proper click on → “Use in Console”
  • Safari: Proper click on → “Log Aspect”
Screenshot of DevTools contextual menus in all three browsers.
Entry a node as a brief variable within the console, as proven in Chrome (left), Firefox (middle), and Safari (proper)

Visualize components with badges

DevTools will help visualize components that match sure properties by displaying a badge subsequent to the node. Badges are clickable, and totally different browsers supply a wide range of totally different badges.

In Safari, there’s a badge button within the Parts panel toolbar which can be utilized to toggle the visibility of particular badges. For instance, if a node has a show: grid or show: inline-grid CSS declaration utilized to it, a grid badge is displayed subsequent to it. Clicking on the badge will spotlight grid areas, observe sizes, line numbers, and extra, on the web page.

A grid overlay visualized on top of a three-by-three grid.
Grid overlay with badges in Safari DevTools

The badges which might be presently supported in Firefox’s DevTools are listed within the Firefox supply docs. For instance, a scroll badge signifies a scrollable ingredient. Clicking on the badge highlights the ingredient inflicting the overflow with an overflow badge subsequent to it.

Overflow badge in Firefox DevTools located in the HTML panel

In Chromium browsers, you possibly can right-click on any node and choose “Badge settings…” to open a container that lists all the obtainable badges. For instance, components with scroll-snap-type may have a scroll-snap badge subsequent to it, which on click on, will toggle the scroll-snap overlay on that ingredient.

Taking screenshots

We’ve been capable of take screenshots from some DevTools for some time now, however it’s now obtainable in all of them and consists of new methods to take full-page photographs.

The method begins by right-clicking on the DOM node you wish to seize. Then choose the choice to seize the node, which is labeled in a different way relying on which DevTools you’re utilizing.

Screenshot of DevTools in all three browsers.
Chrome (left), Safari (center), and Firefox (proper)

Repeat the identical steps on the html node to take a full-page screenshot. Whenever you do, although, it’s price noting that Safari retains the transparency of the ingredient’s background coloration — Chromium and Firefox will seize it as a white background.

Two screenshots of the same element, one with a background and one without.
Evaluating screenshots in Safari (left) and Chromium (proper)

There’s an alternative choice! You’ll be able to take a “responsive” screenshot of the web page, which lets you seize the web page at a selected viewport width. As you may count on, every browser has alternative ways to get there.

  • Chromium: Cmd + Shift + M (macOS) or Ctrl + Shift + M (Home windows). Or click on the “Units” icon subsequent to the “Examine” icon.
  • Firefox: Instruments → Browser Instruments → “Responsive Design Mode”
  • Safari: Develop → “Enter Responsive Design Mode”
Enter responsive mode options in DevTools for all three browsers.
Launching responsive design mode in Safari (left), Firefox (proper), and Chromium (backside)

Chrome tip: Examine the highest layer

Chrome allows you to visualize and examine top-layer components, like a dialog, alert, or modal. When a component is added to the #top-layer, it will get a top-layer badge subsequent to it, which on click on, jumps you to the top-layer container situated simply after the </html> tag.

The order of the weather within the top-layer container follows the stacking order, which implies the final one is on the highest. Click on the reveal badge to leap again to the node.

Firefox tip: Leap to ID

Firefox hyperlinks the ingredient referencing the ID attribute to its goal ingredient in the identical DOM and highlights it with an underline. Use CMD + Click on (macOS) or CTRL + Click on (Home windows) )to leap to the goal ingredient with the identifier.

Wrapping up

Fairly a couple of issues, proper? It’s superior that there are some extremely helpful DevTools options which might be supported in Chromium, Firefox, and Safari alike. Are there some other lesser-known options supported by all three that you just like?

There are a couple of assets I maintain shut by to remain on high of what’s new. I assumed I’d share them with right here:


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