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View Multiple Web Browser Windows in the Visual Studio IDE

, 22 May 2010
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View multiple browser windows in the Visual Studio IDE to consolidate your workflow.
I recently discovered that I could view a browser window in the Visual Studio IDE by going to View → Other Windows → Web Browser. While I found that useful, I recently came across a situation in which I wanted more than one web page in the IDE. It took some time, but I eventually figured out there are several ways to do this:
  1. Open a web browser tab, then go to Windows → New Window. This will spawn a second web browser tab.
  2. Open a web browser tab, navigate to a website (e.g., Google), right click a link and select Open Link in New Window.
  3. Open a web browser tab, then navigate to an HTML file on your hard drive with multiple frames. That HTML file might contain, for example, the following:
    <html>
    <head>
        <title>Multiple Webpages</title>
    </head>
    <frameset cols="50%, 50%">
    	<frame src="http://www.google.com/">
    	<frame src="http://www.microsoft.com/">
    </frameset>
    </html>
Here are some advantages and disadvantages to each approach above:
  1. This first option is the easiest. Although it does add extra tabs to your IDE, which can make it take longer to look through your other code tabs.
  2. This second option works best if you don't like messing with the menu options in the IDE.
  3. This third option reduces the number of tabs you use. Also, you can drag the separators between pages to focus on one page at a time by making it bigger. However, some websites that require a login will not work, probably becuse they require cookies. And some websites (e.g., Code Project) will remove the frames and load themselves instead.
I find this ability to be useful because it reduces the number of windows in my taskbar. I'm learning JavaScript, so I like to have an HTML page loaded in Visual Studio to try out JavaScript. I also like to have a PDF eBook loaded into a web browser tab in the IDE. And, finally, I have the JavaScript page on my personal wiki open in yet another web browser tab in the IDE, so that I can take notes. This makes learning JavaScript organized and interactive, but I'm sure there are a ton of other uses for multiple IDE web browser tabs.

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This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)

About the Author

AspDotNetDev
Web Developer
United States United States
  • Managing Your JavaScript Library in ASP.NET (if you work with ASP.net and you don't read that, you are dead to me).
  • Graduated summa cum laude with a BS in Computer Science.
  • Wrote some articles and some tips.
  • DDR ("New high score? What does that mean? Did I break it?"), ping pong, and volleyball enthusiast.
  • Software I have donated to (you should too):

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