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Chapter 10. Debugging Console

There is a debugging console included with Smarty. The console informs you of all the included templates, assigned variables and config file variables for the current invocation of the template. A template file named debug.tpl is included with the distribution of Smarty which controls the formatting of the console.

Set $debugging to TRUE in Smarty, and if needed set $debug_tpl to the template resource path to debug.tpl (this is in SMARTY_DIR by default). When you load the page, a Javascript console window will pop up and give you the names of all the included templates and assigned variables for the current page.

To see the available variables for a particular template, see the {debug} template function. To disable the debugging console, set $debugging to FALSE. You can also temporarily turn on the debugging console by putting SMARTY_DEBUG in the URL if you enable this option with $debugging_ctrl .

Technical Note

The debugging console does not work when you use the fetch() API, only when using display(). It is a set of javascript statements added to the very bottom of the generated template. If you do not like javascript, you can edit the debug.tpl template to format the output however you like. Debug data is not cached and debug.tpl info is not included in the output of the debug console.


The load times of each template and config file are in seconds, or fractions thereof.

See also troubleshooting.

by Andrew on Feb 28, 2012 at 4:37
The following is not true: "The debugging console does not work when you use the fetch() API, only when using display()." It works just fine if you use fetch() too.
by Redn0x on Oct 26, 2011 at 6:25
If you need to use the fetch method for your template but still want to use the debugging console you can do this:
$smarty = new smarty();
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