Debugging / development dialog

The Debug Dialog This is a small draggable dialog, displayed at the top-right corner of a page, by clicking on the administrator's toolbar. It shows a list of check-boxes, the same ones that appear under the “Debug” field of the system settings dialog.

The first option “Any”, acts as a power switch that globally enables/disables all other selected options. In other words, for any option to be active, this switch must be active too. As soon as you click on “Any” to deselect it, this dialog disappears and no debugging switch is considered active - even if it is selected. What the button does is to enable “Any” along with “CSS”, which is the most commonly used option/switch.

Please, have in mind the following:

  1. This dialog is only visible to administrators and webmasters. No other user is able to see it, even if it is active.
  2. The JS and CSS options of it, however, are visible and do have an impact on other users browsing experience. This is what they are used for, after all.

The options in detail:

These are listed together because they function similarly. What they do is to temporarily (for as long as they are “on”) cause zoglair to re-compile javascript / CSS files and force your site visitors' browsers to re-download them. This means that any change you make to a JS / CSS file, is immediately effective. It also means that zoglair takes much longer (up to 10 times more) to generate a page than it normally does. That is why it is important NOT to leave those options active, for no reason.
To better understand why these options are needed you must be aware of the fact that - normally - zoglair serves single, combined and packed JS / CSS versions of related files and - at the same time - instructs the browsers to cache them for 1 (one) year. The exact same thing happens with your images. This way, returning visitors are able to have a much faster browsing experience. The problem, of course, is that a) you need a way to tell zoglair that a new version must be made, and b) visitors should be able to view your changes without a manual refresh (usually by pressing Ctrl+F5). This is exactly what these options do.
When this option is active, its label is turned into a link. Clicking on it, a popup window appears listing all statements executed for the current page, with additional statistical information (view example).
Core Dump
When this option is active, its label is turned into a link. Clicking on it, a popup window appears listing all properties of global zoglair objects and PHP arrays, at the time the current page was finished processing, just before output (view example).
Output Buffer
Zoglair uses a buffer to trap any output unrelated to page content, mainly PHP errors that may occur during processing. This buffer is also accessible through a hook, having the same name. This means that you can run arbitrary PHP code and print anything you want to that buffer, without ruining the page layout. Like a hidden console window, so to speak.
When this option is active, its label is turned into a link and an icon button appears next to it. The link shows you the buffer contents while the button opens the hook for editing (view example).
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