Site preview


The Markdown preview is not consistently delivering the same result as the one you will see on your site. The Front Matter extension provides you a way to show the actual site instead.

Site preview

Info: Once a preview is opened, you will be able to manually change the URL. Something to note is that the URL will not be updated when navigating to other pages.


In order to use the site preview, you will first have to set the setting. You can set it via the Global Settings section in the Front Matter panel or in your frontmatter.json file.

For example, with Hugo, the local server spins up on http://localhost:1313. When you set this URL as the value of the setting. You can click on the open preview button and the site preview will be shown.

Prefix or section configuration

As Front Matter tries to support as many Static-Site Generators as possible, we made the choice to use settings that can be changed on various levels: global, per page folder, and per content type.

When you want to show the live site/page previews in Visual Studio Code, you can specify a custom preview path/prefix. For instance, if you create blog articles, and you want to prefix it with blog/2021/11, you can set this with the previewPath property.

Important: The value used for the preview will be formatted with the article's date. This means that the engine will try to convert all characters you enter to a date formatted string. In case you want to skip some characters or all of them to be converted, you need to wrap that part between two single quotes. Example: "'blog/'yyyy/MM" will result in: blog/2021/11.

Usage of placeholders

Since version 8.3.0, the you can use placeholders in the previewPath property and there are a couple of additional placeholders available which can be used for your preview paths.

Info: You can find these placeholders in the placeholders section.

Usage of a placeholder

The preview path will generate the following path: /post/2023/02/<slug>.

Usage of a placeholder with the publishing date

The preview path will generate the following path: /post/2023/<slug>.

Configuration levels


On the global level, you can use the frontMatter.preview.pathName setting to specify the global path that you want to add after the setting value and before your slug.

This setting can be used for instance to include the year/month like: yyyy/MM. The date will be generated based on the article its date field value.

Page folder

The previewPath property on the frontMatter.content.pageFolders setting, will override what is defined globally and can be used to specify a preview path per page folder.

Info: The previewPath property can contain

Content type

Similar to the previewPath on the page folder level, the previewPath property on the content type level will override what is defined on page folder level and globally.


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