Apple’s Debug Menus


I’m sure many of you know what the debug menus are and know (maybe even have enabled) at least one of them. For those that don’t know what the debug menus are, they’re simply extra functionality to their application that the Mac OS X engineers needed to debug bugs that those applications had. At the release of the OS they kept them in there as a hidden preference for users to flip to have those same menus for their own everyday usage. Here are the applications I know have debug menus and their preference keys to enable them:

Address Book: ABShowDebugMenu Boolean Yes Disk Utility: DUDebugMenuEnabled Boolean Yes iCal: IncludeDebugMenu Boolean Yes Safari: IncludeDebugMenu String 1

The Safari one is the most commonly known. To use the information above open the application’s .plist file (in ~/Library/Preferences) with the Developer Tools application “Property List Editor”:

Address Book: Disk Utility: iCal: Safari:

Make a new child (or sibling if another key is selected) and in the New tem text copy the first chunk above until the space. The next word represents the Class and the last is the Value. A relaunch of the application will be required to make the change active. Enjoy, Alex.