Preview Content on myTrailhead

Learning Objectives

After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:

  • Describe the different ways that users can access preview mode.
  • Describe what you can and can’t do in preview mode.

Learn About Preview Mode

Before you publish content, your stakeholders will probably like to see what the content looks like. With preview mode, myTrailhead users can view whatever content is being added or changed in a release—in the context of all content that’s currently published for the entire content collection. Preview mode replicates the look, feel, and behavior of the myTrailhead user experience, so users can perform quality assurance testing as if the content were already published. 

The best part about preview mode is that users don’t need access to Trailmaker in order to preview content. Any user that meets the following requirements can preview content.

  • The myTrailhead Preview Mode system permission
  • The preview URL

Let’s look at how Pure Aloe uses preview mode as part of its publishing workflow. In the previous unit, Pure Aloe updated the Sell Well at Pure Aloe trail to include a new module, Pure Aloe Sales Goals. Now, Marisol, the release manager, wants to preview the updated trail and the new module and invite other content stakeholders, such as Cindy—the writer who worked so hard on drafting, reviewing, and finalizing the content—or subject matter experts (SMEs).

First, Marisol checks the published version of the Sell Well at Pure Aloe trail. This version provides a helpful baseline for her stakeholders. In a new browser window, she navigates to the published version of the Sell Well at Pure Aloe trail. As expected, the current trail includes only 2 modules.

Sell Well at Pure Aloe trail in production, showing two modules

Access Preview Mode

Marisol can share the preview mode in a few ways.

Get the Preview Mode URL from Trailmaker Content

When Marisol (or other user with the myTrailhead Release Management permission) adds a trail or module to a release from Trailmaker Content, the confirmation window includes a URL to view that content in preview mode.

Confirmation window in Trailmaker Content, highlighting the prompt to copy the link to preview mode after adding content to a release


Marisol can also manually construct the correct URL to content in preview mode. She just needs the subdomain, content collection API name, and release API name, using this format:
To learn more, check out the Salesforce help topic, Preview Mode on myTrailhead.

Because it can take some time for added content to appear in preview mode, Marisol copies the URL. When she confirms that the preview mode is available, she shares the link with stakeholders over email or Slack.

In the myTrailhead Configuration module, we saw that the Salesforce admin at Pure Aloe, Joseph, made a permission set for content creators, and that permission set included the myTrailhead Preview Mode permission. Because Cindy was added to that permission set, she can access the preview mode URL that Marisol shared.

Launch Preview Mode from Trailmaker Release

In Trailmaker Release, Marisol can also click Preview on the release page of an unpublished release.

Release page in Trailmaker Release, showing Preview button

Or, Marisol can select Preview from the release’s Actions dropdown on the content collection page.

Actions picklist for a release on the Pure Aloe namespace page

Allowed Activities in Preview Mode

For a release manager like Marisol, preview mode provides a handy way to make sure that the release contains the expected changes in the structure of trails and modules. For example, Marisol can navigate to the Trails index page, and find the Sell Well at Pure Aloe trail, which provides these indicators on the page.

Preview mode, showing the Trails index page and highlighting preview mode indicators on the page. 

  • A banner at the top of the page (1), which identifies the content collection and release being previewed.
  • An eye icon (2), which identifies new or modified content included in the release.

Marisol expects to see an eye icon on the Sell Well at Pure Aloe trail… and it does! When she clicks the trail, the trail’s page also shows the page banner and the eye icon. Likewise, Marisol can navigate to the Modules index page, and find the Pure Aloe Sales Goals module, and verify that the new module includes the eye icon.

Meanwhile, SMEs can also navigate to the Pure Aloe Sales Goals module and verify that finished content is still correct and matches the draft they previously reviewed. A content creator like Cindy can browse the entire content collection to:

  • Make sure that the new content makes sense in the overall enablement experience.
  • Verify that content is formatted correctly.
  • Check image sizes.
  • Proofread content.
  • Test quizzes.

If any stakeholders find issues that should be corrected before the content is published, Cindy can make the appropriate updates in Trailmaker Content. Then, she can download the updated backpacks and deliver them to Marisol, who can add the updated content to the release, and do another round of preview. 

Preview Mode Limitations

Preview mode is a useful tool for quality assurance activities, but there are a couple of caveats worth noting. First, preview mode supports only one release and one content collection at a time, and you can only preview an unpublished release. Once a release has been published, its preview mode is no longer available.

Second, users can’t earn badges or points in preview mode. They can test quizzes and verify answers, and even test them more than once, which is helpful when a content creator like Cindy needs to modify a quiz after viewing it in preview mode. Users can only earn points and badges by completing quizzes in your live production environment. 

Content creators and release managers can continue to iterate with preview mode and collaborate on appropriate updates until they’re satisfied that the content is ready for production. Then, it’s finally time to publish! In the next unit, we take a look at how a release manager verifies all items in a release and makes all the latest and greatest content available to learners.


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