The complete guide to debugging JavaScript in major browsers

Why this guide?

There are a few things in the development world that can make a huge difference to the quality of your JavaScript code. Effective JavaScript debugging is one of them.

Every major browser, from Google Chrome to Firefox, comes with a built-in debugging tool which surfaces any issues quickly. With better use of browser-based debugging tools, you can diagnose and debug JavaScript issues much faster so you can create better quality code, faster.

Who is this guide for?

If you want to make sure that your code is of the highest quality and you’d like to make the most of your built-in browser debugging tools, this guide is for you. Whether you are just learning the ins and outs of debugging, or are a seasoned pro looking for easy-to-follow instructions, you’ll find this step-by-step guide to debugging JavaScript in major browsers a good coding companion.

How to use this guide

In the following chapters, we’ll break down the steps to debug JavaScript by browser. We’ll use working examples and actionable instructions throughout. Just jump to the browser debugging tool you’d like to use, and follow along step-by-step.

Here’s how you can debug JavaScript across the major browsers

JavaScript debugging in Google Chrome

Chrome DevTools is a set of web authoring and debugging tools built into Google Chrome. Use the DevTools to iterate, debug and profile a website, but in this guide, we’ll look at debugging specifically.

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JavaScript debugging in Firefox

Firefox debug console makes it easy to debug code running on Firefox. Updated in 2017 to offer advanced search, navigation, and debugging capabilities, Firefox’s debugging tool is cited as one of the best.

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JavaScript debugging in Internet Explorer

Although Microsoft Edge is the latest version, many users still use IE as their main browsers, which is why we chose to include this guide. It’s still one of the most popular browsers, with global usage at 2.84%.

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JavaScript debugging in Opera

Opera’s switch to the Blink rendering engine in 2013 made debugging in Opera fast and efficient. The best news is that the process is similar to Chrome DevTools, and with the plethora of resources out there for Chrome, debugging in Opera is a breeze.

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JavaScript debugging in Safari

With Apple’s Safari Web Inspector, you’ll be debugging iOS apps in no time. Web Inspector is a powerful tool that makes it easy to modify, debug, and optimize your web and mobile apps. Web Inspector acts as your command center, and we’ll walk through exactly how to use it to debug your iOS apps.

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JavaScript debugging in Safari Develop Menu

Safari Develop Menu provides tools you can use to make sure your website works well with all standards-based web browsers. Develop Menu lives in Safari’s Advanced Preferences menu, and will help you debug Safari in a flash. Apple’s great UI is a bonus.

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JavaScript debugging in Visual Studio

The Visual Studio debugger exists to help you observe the run-time behavior of your program and find any problems. This guide will show you step-by-step the most efficient way to debug your apps with the Visual Studio debugger.

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