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Validate HTML Files in BBEdit

Validating HTML documents is an important step in web development that can sometimes be overlooked in the hasty attempt to publish web pages. Validation checks your HTML against the formatting standard developed and maintained by the World Wide Web Consortium. Valid HTML markup ensures that a web browser will be able to correctly interpret what you have coded.

Thank goodness BBEdit, one of the best Mac web development applications, can do this right out of the box! Here's how to do it:

  1. Open or create an HTML document in BBEdit.

  2. From the Markup menu, open the Check sub-menu and select Document Syntax (or use the Shift + Command + Y keyboard shortcut) to bring up BBEdit’s HTML syntax checker.

  3. BBEdit’s HTML syntax checker will display warnings and errors in the open files. Each warning and error will indicate which open file and at which line the issue occurs. This is followed by a brief description of what is wrong with the markup. Selecting an error or warning will display where in the document the issue occurred and attempt to highlight the offending markup.

  4. Switch back to your document to make the changes. Remember to start correcting issues from the top of this list first as some of the later issues may be a result of one leading issue. After making changes, run the Syntax Checker again to verify that all issues have been resolved.

That's it! You've validated your HTML document.

Meet Your Macinstructor

Justin Busch is an educational technician in the Distance Learning Program at the Community College of Allegheny County. He is currently a graduate student at Seton Hill University, where he is working towards his Masters Degree in Education with an emphasis on Instructional Systems Design. He has been a Mac user since 1994.


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