Dreamweaver CS5 Syntax Highlighting

With Adobe Dreamweaver, you can create Web pages visually using the program’s “Design” mode or by entering HTML or other Web design code with the program’s “Code” feature. Most versions of Dreamweaver include a code validation feature that checks the syntax of your code and automatically highlights any errors, but this feature isn’t available in Dreamweaver CS5 or CS5.5. To highlight code syntax errors in Dreamweaver CS5, you’ll need to download an add-on application.

  1. About Code Syntax

    • The syntax of Web design code is the structure of the code. Syntax errors occur when the coder or designer makes a mistake and mistypes characters, omits characters or adds unnecessary characters. For example, many design codes use brackets to contain parameters. A missing bracket at the end of a code line can generate a code syntax error and interfere with the Web page’s design and layout in a user’s Web browser.

    Impact of Syntax Errors

    • The impact of syntax problems varies, depending on where in the code the error occurs. Syntax problems don’t always cause problems, but sometimes even a small mistake in the code’s syntax can cause major issues, up to and including complete failure of the page to load or display in the Web browser. Syntax highlighting is important, because it helps designers spot and correct errors before uploading the Web page to the hosting server.

    Code Syntax Validator

    • Most versions of Dreamweaver come with a code validator that scans all the design code syntax on the Web page and highlights any problems. For those without this feature, several third-party code validation services offer this service online as an add-on. To highlight code syntax errors online, copy the code from the Web page or document and paste it into the code validation service tool. The service flags errors in the code syntax and some services also suggest corrections.

    Dreamweaver CS5 Syntax Highlighting

    • Adobe dropped the code validation feature as a standard tool in Dreamweaver CS5, but the company has made available a third-party add-on feature that performs the same function. After downloading the add-on validator from Adobe, you can run the application from the Dreamweaver “Edit” menu. The validator scans all code on the page and compares it with various code libraries. If it discovers a problem, the validator highlights the relevant syntax in the page or document code.

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