Simple instruction how to configure debugger for Angular in VSCode

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Table of contents

Introduction

There're two ways of doing that: launch a new process or attach to an existing one. Both of those methods lead to the same result, but in different ways. Before going further, make sure you have Debugger for Chrome extension installed in you VSCode editor. If you haven't worked with VSCode debugger before, you can quickly familiarize your self with it by reading initial setup section or by using the official guide.

Initial setup

VSCode debugger keeps the configuration in the launch.json file under .vscode folder:

However, this file is not created by default. You can manually create it or allow VSCode do this automatically by doing following series of steps as illustrated in the following picture:

At the end of this section, you should have launch.json with some configuration that VSCode inserted by default.

Launch the process

This is a most straightforward instruction which you find in many tutorials.

  1. First of all, you need to create or change launch.json:
  1. As a next step, in the terminal run Angular (or to be precise Webpack) local web server by executing:
  1. As you have webpack server running, the last step is to go to VSCode's debugger, select "Angular debugging session" configuration and run it:

As a result of this step, new browser window should be opened. Try to set a breakpoint, refresh the browser and see the result:

The key point here is to have web server and VSCode debugger running at the same time.

Attach to the existing process

If you don't like the option with a new browser window, you can attach debugger to the existing browser process. In this case, Chrome needs to be run with the exposed port. For our example, it will be port 9222.

  1. To run Chrome with opened debugging port, please run one of the following commands:

or in a silent mode ( run it as a background process without output to the console):

nohup /Applications/Google\ Chrome.app/Contents/MacOS/Google\ Chrome --remote-debugging-port=9222 &
  1. launch.json configuration for VSCode will look a little bit differently. Change it in accordance with the code below:
  1. Run web server:
  1. Select "Chrome Attach" configuration and run it. As a result of this step, new browser window should be opened. Try to set a breakpoint, refresh the browser and see the result:

As you can see, debugger icon has changed from red square to red square with an outlet, which indicates that we successfully attached debugger to Chrome's process.