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An introduction to Firebug

Firebug is a free and open-source web browser extension for Mozilla Firefox that facilitates the live debugging, editing, and monitoring of any website’s CSS, HTML, DOM, XHR, and JavaScript. It has its license under the BSD license and was initially written in January 2006 by Joe Hewitt, one of the original Firefox creators. The Fire bug Working Group oversees the open source development and extension of Firebug. It has …

By InDesign Media | Thursday 11th July 2019
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Firebug

Firebug is a free and open-source web browser extension for Mozilla Firefox that facilitates the live debugging, editing, and monitoring of any website’s CSS, HTML, DOM, XHR, and JavaScript.

It has its license under the BSD license and was initially written in January 2006 by Joe Hewitt, one of the original Firefox creators. The Fire bug Working Group oversees the open source development and extension of Firebug. It has two major implementations: an extension for Mozilla Firefox and a bookmarked implementation called Firebug Lite which we can use with Google Chrome.

In addition to debugging web pages, it is a useful tool for web security testing and web page performance analysis.

Features

It makes changes immediately and gives constant feedback to the user. All editors in Firebug support auto complete.

It’s command line accepts commands written in JavaScript. The result of executing each command displays in the console, appearing as hyperlinks. The Fire bug application contains multiple windows, splitting related features to a common window. Firebug also allows users to view the download time for individual files. It separates different types of objects, such as JavaScript files and images, and can determined which files loads from a browser’s cache. It also features the ability to examine HTTP headers and time stamps relative to when an HTTP request is made. Its net panel can monitor URLs that the browser requests, such as external CSS, JavaScript, and image files.

HTML and CSS

The HTML and CSS tools allow for the inspection and editing of HTML and CSS elements on a web page. Later versions of allow users to see live changes to the CSS. Visualization of CSS elements is shown while inspecting HTML elements. The Firebug layout tab display and manipulate CSS property values. Furthermore, users can click on any visible HTML elements on a web page to access its CSS property values.

JavaScript Console

Firebug’s script tab enables users to set breakpoints and step through lines of code. Additionally, it can navigate directly to a line of JavaScript code, watch expressions, call stacks, and launch the debugger in the event an error occurs during execution. It can also log errors. Logging uses a Firebug JavaScript API. Firebug’s JavaScript panel can log errors; profile function calls, and enable the developer to run arbitrary JavaScript. It allows users to run JavaScript code through the command line and allows the user to log errors that occur in the JavaScript, CSS, and XML. It also provides a separate text editor to modify the JavaScript and see immediate results on the user’s browser.

As provided in an update, the JavaScript command line features an auto complete function. The text editor also provides the ability to write full functions. Firebug requires a user to refresh a web page in the event of a crash.

Extensions

Many extensions have been made to enhance the Firebug experience. Since Firebug is open source, users can contribute their own extensions to the Firebug community.

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