Protocol monitor: View and send CDP requests

Dale St. Marthe
Dale St. Marthe

Use the Protocol monitor to view all CDP requests and responses made by DevTools and send CDP commands directly.


Chrome DevTools uses the Chrome DevTools Protocol (CDP) to instrument, inspect, debug and profile Chrome browsers. Developers can use the Protocol monitor to work with the CDP programmatically.

The Protocol monitor lets you do the following:

  • Record CDP requests and responses
  • Inspect CDP messages
  • Save CDP messages
  • Send CDP commands

Open the Protocol monitor

To open the Protocol monitor, follow these steps:

  1. Make sure the experiment is enabled. Check the Protocol Monitor checkbox under Settingssettings > Experiments.

  2. Open the Command menu by pressing:

    • macOS: Command+Shift+P
    • Windows, Linux, ChromeOS: Control+Shift+P Command Menu with
  3. Start typing Protocol monitor, select Show Protocol monitor, and press Enter. DevTools displays the Protocol monitor panel at the bottom of your DevTools window.

Alternatively, in the top right corner, select more_vert More options > More tools > Protocol monitor.

Record CDP requests and responses

When you open the Protocol monitor, it automatically starts recording CDP messages from the current page. The Protocol monitor continues recording even if you refresh the page or close Devtools.

To stop or start recording, click the record button on the left of the action bar at the top of the panel.

The record button in the Protocol monitor panel.

Inspect CDP messages

As the Protocol monitor records, CDP messages are logged in a table on the left side of the panel.

Click a Method, Request, or Response cell to open a detailed view of its Request or Response data on the right side of the panel.

A method highlighted in the Protocol monitor panel.

Switch between the Request or Response data by clicking on the respective header tab.

Right-clicking a value in the Method column gives you context based options.

Clear and download CDP messages

To clear all recorded CDP messages, click the clearblock button in the action bar.

To download the recorded messages as a JSON file, click download download.

Send raw CDP commands

There are two main ways to send a CDP command through the Protocol monitor:

  • If the command does not require any parameters, type the command into the input field at the bottom of the Protocol Monitor, then press Enter, for example Page.captureScreenshot.

    If the command requires parameters, provide them in JSON format, for example {"cmd":"Page.captureScreenshot","args":{"format": "jpeg"}}.

    The drop-down to the right of the input field specifies the target.

Target dropdown highlighted in the Protocol monitor.

  • You can also use the CDP editor to edit and issue commands:

    1. Open the command editor by clicking the left_panel_open Show CDP command editor button next to the command input field.
    2. Select a target from the drop-down list, and start typing a CDP command next to the command prompt. Autocomplete provides you with relevant options. Select the command you intend to use. The command input in protocol monitor.
    3. After you enter a CDP command, the editor creates a structured form of parameters based on the protocol definitions. Fill out these parameters to send them with your command. Parameter input with service worker related parameters listed for filling out.
    4. Send the command by clicking the send Send command button or pressing Ctrl + Enter.

You can also edit and resend commands from the table. Right-click an item in the table and select Edit and resend from the drop-down menu. This will automatically reopen the CDP editor and prefill it with the command you selected.

For more information about the CDP editor, see Craft your Chrome Devtools Protocol (CDP) commands efficiently with the new command editor.