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Using an XML File

 

An XML File in a Browser

After creating an XML file, you can use it. One way you can do this is to display it in a grid-based window such as the DataGrid control. Another way you can display an XML file is in a browser. To do this, if you see the file in Windows Explorer, in My Computer, or in My Documents, you can double-click it.

 

Practical Learning Practical Learning: Displaying an XML File in a Browser

  1. Open Windows Explorer or My Computer and display the contents of the folder that contains the current project (CPAP1)
  2. Open its bin folder followed by its Debug sub folder
  3. Double-click the Employees.xml file
     
  4. Return to SharpDevelop

Using a Style Sheet to Display an XML File in a Browser

When an XML file is displayed in a browser, it appears in a format that would be unclear to most people. If you want the XML code to display as if it were HTML, you can create a cascading style sheet that would format the tags and display the text as you prefer.

 

Practical Learning Practical Learning: Using a Style Sheet

  1. To create a CSS file, in the Projects list, right-click CPAP1 -> Add -> New File...
  2. In the Categories list, click Misc
  3. In the Templates list, click Empty Text File
  4. Change the File Name to cpap.css and click Create
  5. Complete the style sheet file as follows:
     
    EmplNumber
    {
    	display: block;
    	font-weight: bold;
    	font-size: 16pt;
    	color: white;
    	font-family: Garamond, Georgia, 'Times New Roman' , Serif;
    	background-color: #990000;
    }
    FirstName
    {
    	font-size: 10pt;
    	font-family: Verdana, Tahoma, Arial, Sans-Serif;
    	background-color: white;
    }
    LastName
    {
    	font-size: 10pt;
    	font-family: Verdana, Tahoma, Arial, Sans-Serif;
    	background-color: white;
    }
    HourlySalary
    {
    	font-size: 10pt;
    	color: #ff0066;
    	font-family: Verdana, Tahoma, Arial, Sans-Serif;
    	background-color: white;
    	display: block;
    }
  6. To open the Employees.xml file, on the main menu, click File -> Open -> File...
  7. Change the Files of Type to XML Files (*.xml)
  8. Display the debug sub-folder of the bin folder of the current project.
    Select Employees.xml and click Open
  9. Click the first line, press End and press Enter
  10. Type <?xml:stylesheet href="cpap.css" type="text/css" ?>
  11. Save the Employees.xml file
  12. Click the cpap.css file to display it.
    To save the cpap.css file in the same folder as the Employees.xml file, on the main menu, click File -> Save As...
  13. Display the debug sub-folder of the bin folder of the current project.
    Change the Save As Type to All Files
  14. Change the File Name to cpap.css and click Save
  15. Return to the browser and refresh it
     
    An XML File Using Style Sheet

Opening an XML File

Instead of displaying the contents of an XML file in a browser, you may want to open it as a document. To do this, you can use the XmlDocument.Load() method. It comes in four versions. One of the versions of this method receives the file name or path to an XML file as argument. Its syntax is:

public virtual void Load(string filename);

The name of the XML file or its path must be passed to this version of the Load() method. If the method succeeds, it opens the file. If it doesn't, the compiler throws an XmlException type of exception.

Reading XML Text

Another way you can explore an XML file consists of reading it. To support reading an XML file, the .NET Framework provides the XmlTextReader. We will explore its properties and methods in Lesson 10.

 

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