To access and set the available options for the extension right mouse click the screen, or click the 'TV' icon on the toolbar button, or select 'Total Validator Options' from the Firefox/SeaMonkey Tools menu, or 'Options' from the Add-ons dialog/page.
To reset all the options back to their defaults use the 'Defaults' button at the bottom of the dialog box.
Note: If you right mouse click in a toolbar and choose 'Customize...' you can add a 'TV' button to your toolbar as an alternative way of running Total Validator.
Use this tab to select which of the five validations you wish to perform. If you don't select any option then a simple validation will still be performed to ensure that there are no broken tags etc. You can also choose what type of problems to report on.
If you untick any option such as 'HTML validation' then the corresponding tab containing options for that type of validation will be hidden and the options on it will be completely ignored.
Number of pages: This option allows Pro tool users to validate every page on the current site with just one click.
Send source of page: The url of the current page is normally sent to the validation tool for testing. But if the page is password protected then this may fail. In this case tick this checkbox to send the source of the current web page for validation instead. Note: Broken links cannot be checked with this option. Also the Pro tool allows you to be dynamically authenticated, providing a better solution than this for protected pages.
Tool: This is the folder containing your Basic or Pro tool. For Windows the path is initially taken from the Registry and is typically "C:\Program Files\TotalValidatorTool". With Linux the tool can be installed anywhere and so you must manually enter the name of the folder containing the tool e.g "/home/halford/totalvalidatorpro". For OS X the path is typically "/Applications/TotalValidator" or "/Applications/TotalValidatorPro". The system will automatically detect what type of tool is installed (Basic or Pro) and display the appropriate options.
Run tool: Click this button to launch the tool directly. All your current settings will be copied across to the tool. With the Pro tool, if you have the appropriate checkbox ticked, any cookies stored for the current page will also be copied across ready to be used when you validate the page.
Java: This is only displayed for Linux and should be set to the location of the Java executable. For example: "/usr/bin/java".
You can use this tab to select which (X)HTML validation you wish to perform. Pages can be validated against one of the W3C Markup Specifications.
Total Validator includes an SGML parser and tests the page against the latest version of the W3C/ISO DTD (i.e. the specification) that you choose. It will also test against some of the things in the specifications which cannot be covered by the DTDs, although this is a work in progress at present.
The Auto-detect option is usually the best option to select and uses the <!DOCTYPE> declaration on each page to select the DTD to use. If the <!DOCTYPE> is missing or unrecognised a best-fit algorithm will calculate the DTD that produces the fewest errors and will test against that instead.
The Best-fit option ignores any existing <!DOCTYPE> and uses the DTD that produces the fewest errors. This is a useful way of determining the best <!DOCTYPE> to add to any page.
Note that Auto-detect and Best-fit can never choose a Polyglot validation. This must always be selected manually.
Note that many of the published accessibility guidelines can only properly be tested through manual checking of your pages. That is why most accessibility validators typically display lots of largely irrelevant warnings with every page that is tested. Total Validator keeps things nice and simple and just displays errors and warnings for those tests that can be automated. But you must still manually check that your pages are accessible as passing any automated test isn't good enough. Tools such as Total Validator are best used to check your pages once you've made them accessible or following any minor changes to them.
The spelling validator will check your pages for spelling mistakes. It will take a little longer to check your page with this option so you may wish to provide an email address on the Validations tab to avoid hanging around. It is also advisable to only use this option once your web page is valid as the output can be quite verbose.
Languages: You can choose to check against American or British dictionaries of over 150,000 words each, French of over 130,000 words, Spanish of over 85,000 words, German of over 160,000 words, or Italian of over 60,000 words. Each dictionary is updated regularly, but they do not contain many proper nouns or industry specific words (e.g. cities, people's names, company names, technical terms). However, you can provide your own additional words using Total Validator Pro.
Pro tool options: When the Pro tool is installed, all of the disabled options will be available for selection. See the Pro tool documentation for their meaning.
You can use this tab to select which CSS level you wish to validate against: 1, 2.1 or 3.
Ignore vendor: Normally vendor extensions such as -moz-box-shadow will raise a warning, but will still be validated against the chosen CSS level. But some vendor extensions do not conform to the latest specifications and may also report an error. With the 'ignore vendor' option any vendor extension will be ignored completely so that no warnings or errors are reported.
If you choose to validate broken links Total Validator will check each link on each page to ensure that it isn't broken. Links to all resources such as CSS files, images, and scripts are checked as well as links to web pages. With the Pro tool installed, extra options are available on this tab:
Report redirects: When checking for broken links redirects are automatically followed. But redirected links can eventually become obsolete, so you may wish to know when this happens. Ticking this s checkbox will display a warning message for these three types of redirect: Permanently Moved (301), Temporarily Moved (302), and See Other (303).
Timeout: Checking links can often be a time consuming process, especially if there are broken links on the page or when accessing particularly slow servers. So you may wish to set the value here to change how long to wait for a response before reporting a link as broken.
Concurrency: When checking for broken links some web servers cannot cope with a lot of requests for pages at the same time. This option allows you to set how many simultaneous links checks will be performed. For the fastest results, leave blank or set to 0. .
Link pause: If you really wish to minimise the impact on your server you can set concurrency to 1 and then set this field to the time in milliseconds to wait before testing each link. By pausing in this way the rate of requests hitting the server will be reduced. If you are testing more than one page you can also set a similar delay before retrieving each page on the Pro tool tab (see below).
This tab contains additional options available only with the Pro tool. The options reflect those on the corresponding tabs of the Pro tool. See the Pro tool documentation for more information.
Cookies: The 'Send browser cookies to pro tool' checkbox allows you to validate websites that are protected by a login form, by sending all the cookies for the current page (stored in the browser's cache) to the Pro tool. This works as follows: In Firefox or SeaMonkey log into the site you wish to check. Your browser should now hold a session cookie containing a reference to your login session. When you now use the extension to start the validation this cookie will be passed to the Pro tool so that it will have access to the protected pages of the website. Remember to make use of the 'Path to skip' field to avoid any 'log off' links.
This tab displays the current version and some useful links, such as to this page. It also allows you to set the visibility of the status bar icon and context menu items.
Show context menu icon: Untick this checkbox if you don't wish to have 'Total Validator' appear on the context menu (rt mouse click menu).
Show tools menu icon: Untick this checkbox if you don't wish to have 'Total Validator' appear on the Tools menu.
If you have a problem that isn't covered below then complete the feedback form to report it. Don't forget to leave a valid email address where you can be contacted.
Firefox/SeaMonkey sometimes displays a popup saying that it cannot install the extension because it has an "Invalid file hash". This is a known browser issue and not a problem with the extension download file. If this happens right mouse click on the download link on this site, save the .xpi file to your computer, then drag the file (or open it) in your browser.
If after installing a new version you cannot seem to change any options or clicking the OK button on the Options dialog doesn't make it close, try resetting all options by using the Defaults button first.
If TV doesn't respond or operate properly try the following things to see if it will help:
- Disable all your extensions except for TV. Restart your browser to see if TV now works. If it does then it could be another badly behaved extension at fault. Try enabling the other extensions one by one or a few at a time until you find the culprit.
- Try uninstalling the TV extension, restarting your browser, and then installing it again.