Debug WebView2 apps with Visual Studio

Microsoft Visual Studio provides various debugging tools for web and native code in WebView2 apps, to debug web and native code in Win32 apps or Office Add-ins. This article focuses on debugging WebView2 controls. The other methods of debugging in Visual Studio are available, as well.

Open DevTools using an approach other than F12

When you debug your app in Visual Studio with the native debugger attached, pressing F12 may trigger the native debugger instead of Developer Tools. To avoid that situation, press Ctrl+Shift+I. Or, right-click the page, and then select Inspect.


  • To debug scripts, the app must be launched from within Visual Studio.

  • You cannot attach a debugger to a running WebView2 process.

  • Install Visual Studio 2019 version 16.4 Preview 2 or later.

To debug your code, first install and set up the script debugger tools in Visual Studio, per the following two sections.

Install the JavaScript diagnostics component

First, install the JavaScript diagnostics component in Desktop development with C++, as follows.

  1. In the Windows Explorer bar, type Visual Studio Installer.

  2. Select Visual Studio Installer to open it.

  3. In the Visual Studio Installer, on the installed version, click the More button, and then select Modify.

  4. In Visual Studio, under Workloads, select the Desktop Development with C++ setting:

    Visual Studio Modifying Workloads Screen.

  5. Select Individual components, at the top.

  6. In the search box, enter JavaScript diagnostics.

  7. Select the JavaScript diagnostics setting.

  8. Click Modify.

    Visual Studio: Modifying values in the 'Individual components' tab.

Enable script debugging for WebView2 apps

Second, enable script debugging for WebView2 apps, as follows.

  1. Right-click your WebView2 project, and then select Properties.

  2. Under the Configuration Properties, select Debugging.

  3. Under the Debugger Type, select JavaScript (WebView2).

    The 'Debugging' configuration property in Visual Studio.

Debug your WebView2 app

After doing the above setup, debug your WebView2 app, as follows.

  1. To set a breakpoint in your source code, hover to the left of the line number, and click to set a breakpoint. The JS/TS debug adapter doesn't perform source path mapping. You must open the exact same path associated with your WebView2.

    Adding a breakpoint in Visual Studio.

  2. To run the debugger, select the bit size of the platform, and then click the green Play button next to Local Windows Debugger. The app runs and the debugger connects to the first WebView2 process that is created.

    The Local Windows Debugger in Visual Studio.

  3. In the Debug Console, find the output from the debugger.

    Debug Console in Visual Studio.


Virtual source path mapping not supported in Visual Studio 2019

If you use the WebView2 SetVirtualHostNameToFolderMapping method, the debugger in Visual Studio 2019 doesn't understand the virtual source path mapping, so breakpoints don't work correctly.

Virtual source path mapping works when you use the debugger in Visual Studio Code.

See also