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Creating and using media queries in Dreamweaver

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Use Visual Media Queries to view and edit your web pages at different breakpoints corresponding to different screen sizes.

Media Queries is a CSS3 module that helps you design responsive websites by defining different style rules for different devices or media types. Based on these rules, content is rendered to adapt to various conditions, such as, screen sizes, browser window sizes, device sizes and orientation, and resolution.

You can add media queries using the @media rule to your CSS. Or, you can create separate style sheets for different media types and then call them using the following syntax:

<link rel='stylesheet' media='all' href='normal.css' />
<link rel='stylesheet' media='print' href='print.css' />
<link rel='stylesheet' media='screen and (min-width: 701px)' href='medium.css' />

The browser on a device checks the media query and uses the corresponding CSS file to display the web page. 

For more information, see this article.

You can add the media queries by adding the relevant code to your HTML or CSS files. In addition, Dreamweaver lets you create and manage media queries easily using:

The basic difference between these two methods is the visual aspect. If you prefer to code and then view the changes in Live view, use the CSS Designer. If you prefer to visualize your page at different breakpoints and simultaneously make design changes, Visual Media Query is a better bet.

Visual Media Query bars

Visual Media Query bars are a visual representation of the media queries present in a page. These bars help you visualize your web page at different breakpoints and how different components of your web page reflow in different viewports. While you view your page in different viewports, you can make design changes that are specific to a viewport without affecting the page design in other viewports.

Visual Media Query consists of three bars as horizontal rows, each representing a category of media query:

  •  Green: Media queries with max-width conditions
  •  Blue : Media queries with both min-width and max-width conditions
  •  Purple : Media queries with min-width conditions

The media queries listed in the CSS designer panel are also prefixed with these colors.

Each category can consist of one or more media queries. If a media query condition is not defined in the document, then the corresponding visual media qurey bar, too, will not be displayed. For example, if the document does not contain min-width conditions, then the purple bar is not displayed.

The breakpoint values are indicated on the bars - min-width at the left and max-width at the right of the bar.

Breakpoint values

A. Breakpoints B. Visual Media Query bars C. Add media query icon D. Scrubber 

Hide or show Visual Media Queries

The Visual Media Query bar is visible in Live View by default. To hide the bar, use the Toggle Visual Media Queries bar in the toolbar.

Switch between breakpoints

To view your page in a specific size (breakpoint), click the corresponding media query bar. The document will snap to the breakpoint.

Alternatively, you can drag the scrubber to the required breakpoint.

To resize the view to the size of the Dreamweaver document window, do one of the following actions:

  • Double-click anywhere in the grey area at the right of the document where you see the text 'Double Click To Fit Width'. If you don't see the grey area, drag the scrubber to the left.
  • Select the Full Width option in the drop-down list at the bottom of the document window.
Resize the view
Resize the view

If you do not see this option, drag the scrubber to decrease the size of the web page.

Edit media queries visually

  1. Click the Visual Media Query bar that corresponds to the media query that you want to edit.

    Resize handles appear. For media queries that have both min and max-width values, resize handles appear on both the sides of the bar.

    Resize handles

  2. Drag the handles to the required size.

    The media queries are automatically updated with the new min-width and/or max-width values. A notification is displayed to indicate that the media query was successfully edited. If there are multiple media queries that correspond to the visual media query bar, all the media queries are updated. The number of media queries that were updated is displayed along with the success message. 


To undo, press Ctrl+Z (Win) or Cmd+Z (Mac).

Alternatively, you can double-click the breakpoint values to type in the values using your keyboard. 

Add new media queries

  1. Drag the scrubber along the ruler to the required size.

  2. Click .

    Adding media queries
    Adding media queries

  3. In the pop-up that appears, the max-width option is selected by default. To specify min-width or min-max, select the appropriate option in the drop-down list and select the required units.

    Then, select a CSS source in which the media query must be added.

    If you choose to create a new CSS file, another pop-up appears. Specify the name and the path of the new CSS file and click OK.


To undo, press Ctrl+Z (Win) or Cmd+Z (Mac).

Delete media queries

  1. Right-click the corresponding Visual Media Query bar.

  2. Click Delete and then click the media query that you want to delete.

  3. Click OK to confirm that you want to delete all the media queries and the associated selectors.


To undo, press Ctrl+Z (Win) or Cmd+Z (Mac).

View the code for media queries

  1. Right-click the required Visual Media Query bar and hover your mouse on Go To Code.

    A list of all media queries in that particular breakpoint range along with the files in the which they are declared appears.

  2. Click the required media query to navigate to the corresponding code in Code View.

    If the Code View is not visible, the document is switched to Split view to display the code.


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