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General, HTML Designer, Options Dialog Box

These settings allow you to adjust the default view in which Web pages open for editing in the HTML Designer.

To access this dialog box

  1. In Microsoft Visual Web Developer, click Tools, and then click Options.

    The Options dialog box opens.

  2. In the left panel, expand the HTML Designer node, and click General.

    If you have configured your environment settings for Web development, the elements of this node are included with the elements of the General Tab, Options Dialog Box (Visual Web Developer). For more information about environment settings, see How to: Change Select Settings.


Additional HTML options can be found under the Text Editor, HTML node, which is visible if the Show all settings check box is selected.

For more information about formatting HTML, see Formatting Elements in the HTML Editor in Visual Web Developer.

The following user interface (UI) elements are displayed if your environment settings are configured for general development and you have clicked the General node in the HTML Designer node in the Options dialog box, or if you have the Show all settings check box selected.

Start Pages in

Source View

When this option is selected, the editor initially displays Web pages in Source view, showing the page's markup. For details, see Source View.

Design View

When this option is selected, the editor initially displays Web pages in Design view, showing a WYSIWYG-like view. For details, see Design View.

Smart Tags

Automatically display Smart Tags for controls in Design view

When this check box is selected, Web server controls automatically display a smart tag menu of common commands under two circumstances:

  • When the control is first dragged onto the page from the Toolbox.

  • When the control is selected for the first time after you switch from Source view.

You can always display the smart tag menu by clicking the smart tag symbol.