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Internet Explorer "Developer Tools" -- How to enable the 'Add Watch Variable' to the Watch Pane again?

Posted on 2010-09-08
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
In the Internet Explorer "Developer Tools" tool screen -- How do I enable the option to 'Add Watch Variable' to the Watch Pane again (or show the textbox to type in a watch variable)?

I generally do dev in Firefox, but then run my code in IE to make it works for the rest of the internal customers at work, and I just saw the Internet Explorer's "Developer Tools" (F12) option, which apparently is now supposed to work almost as well as Firefox's Firebug.

Problem: I was clicking around and was initially able to "Add as watch variable" by right-clicking, but now I do Not see that option anymore.  I do not have the capability to "type in a watch variable" in the "watch pane" either (no "add"  text nor a blank box to type in a variable, like I see in the documentation).  I searched online in MSDN, but it never mentions how I might have disabled it (or how to re-enable it).   I tried it While debugging and while stopped.  I'm fairly certain I inadvertently disabled this (but how?), since I DID add variables on the right side before I started clicking around the menu. (I did re-start IE and still no good).  When I right-click in my Script pane over some code, the pop-up just shows "Insert Breakpoint, Select All, and Copy" as options; it does not have the "Add as watch variable".

The tool is rather useless at this point, since I can't even "hover" over a variable in my Script pane to see its value (like in Firebug), so I 'need' to be able to add Watch Variables to the right-side pane.

Please advice. Thanks.
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Question by:murach
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by:golfwins
ID: 33631087
Are you able to hover over the variable and Right click to Add to the Watch Pane?
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Expert Comment

by:golfwins
ID: 33631141
Sorry for my last post I jumped the gun. Scroll down to Inspecting variables and see if this helps any.

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd565625(VS.85).aspx
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by:murach
ID: 33634944
I'm trying to determine what the difference is .... as I can sometimes (now) see the option, and other times I cannot.  Klugey tool, this "Developer Tools" option for IE (it obviously has not been nearly as well tested and thought-out as Firefox's Firebug tool).
Anyone have other ideas on how to get the option back (to stay)?
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Accepted Solution

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murach earned 0 total points
ID: 33636748
Ok. Here's the difference.  If using a code page you are working on, you can press F12 to bring up the Internet Explorer "Developer Tools" window.  However, you can Just use it to view HTML and CSS and the various menu options at the top, and add some Breakpoints.  Pressing "Start Debugging" doesn't do much, as apparently you aren't 'debugging' yet.  So, to actually get it to Debug, you need to press your code form's "Submit" button, in order for it to go into the JavaScript part of your code, to actually 'start' the debugging.  It is at this point that you are allowed to "Add watch variables" (and when the right-click menu-option for that displays, and when the "Add" label is shown in the right-side Watch Pane).
This request can be closed now.
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