Finding the error console in Firefox 4 beta…and more!

firefox logoThe Firefox 4 beta is out, and I’ve run it through the gamut of applications that I’ve written and somewhat responsible for (good news: everything works!), but I ran into a bit of a problem trying to find the JavaScript (or error) console. The reason for this is that Firefox 4 no longer has a menu bar by default, but instead has a single Firefox drop down menu in the upper left of the Firefox window.  I like this, because it gives more room for what you’re on the Internet for: content. Since the advent of tabs and toolbars, content has been continually having it’s real estate stolen, so it’s good to see content area reclamation taking place.

But without the menu bar, there’s no (visible) way of getting to the JavaScript console. However, it’s still possible to get the menu bar to appear temporarily by pressing the alt key; the tab area pushes down, and exposes a menu bar near the top of the screen. Once the menu bar appears, you can go to Tools -> Error Console to get your JavaScript debug on. While looking at the Tools menu, remember that the key combination Ctrl-Shift-J will bring up the console directly.

If you want the menu bar back permanently, go to the Firefox drop down menu, select Customize, then check Menu Bar, and the menu bar stays, leaving the JavaScript console at your beck and call.


The Error Console is old news. It’s soooo 2008. Now all the cool kids are using the Heads-Up Display, which, from what I’ve seen, is the Error Console on steroids.  There are more types of events to filter, including DOM mutation (which is great for AJAX debugging). Check it out.

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