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How Do XML Files Work

XML is a markup language designed specifically to be read by both humans and machines. This is accomplished using tags that are also customizable, and they specify the document’s structure and how it should be saved and transferred. XML files are simple because they employ human language with actual words rather than a computer language. The .XML files are fully portable and compatible with other languages such as Java, Python, and C, allowing you to access and transmit data at any time and from any location. All you need is XML-processing software to store and transport your information. Users can generate their own tags or utilize tags established by other users because XML is an expandable markup language.

Difference between XML and HTML

XML is usually compared with HTML; HTML uses a collection of predefined markup symbols (shortcodes) to specify the format of content on a web page. Unlike HTML, XML does not have specific markups, it allows users to construct their own markup symbols to represent information, resulting in a symbol set that is both limitless and self-defining.

How to open a .XML file

An XML file can be maintained in several different ways. You can open and modify them in any text editor, view them in any web browser, or utilize a website that allows you to view, edit, and convert them to different formats.

XML files are text files, that can be opened with any text editor but the problem is that many text editors, such as Notepad, aren’t built to display XML files in their right structure. It could be OK to open an XML file and glance at it quickly to find out what it is. However, there are far more effective tools for working with them. While Notepad is handy for rapidly inspecting an XML file, you’re far better off using a more complex tool like Notepad++, which emphasizes syntax and formats the file correctly. You can also open .XML files directly from any web browser as well.

How do XML files work

Each occurrence of an XML tag is given a name called an element that can include other elements as well in heirarchy. The “root” element is at the top of the hierarchy and contains all other components referred to as “child” elements.

For example:

<Company>
    <Employee>
        <FirstName>Linux</FirstName>
        <LastName>Hint</LastName>
        <ContactNo>1234567890</ContactNo>
        <URL>www.Linuxhint.com</URL>
        <Address>
            <Country>USA</Country>
            <City>Virginia</City>
            <Zip>560212</Zip>
        </Address>
    </Employee>
</Company>

The root element in the example above is “Company.” It has two main elements. The first one is the “Employee” element, having four sub-elements “FirstName,” “LastName,” “ContactNo,” and “URL”. The second element is “Address,” which contains three sub-elements “Country,” “City,” and “Zip”. A starting tag (e.g., “<Employee>” and “<Address>” ) and a closing tag (e.g., “<Employee/>” and “<Address/>”) denote the beginning and end of each element, respectively.

Conclusion

XML is a markup language created that can be read by people as well as machines makes it simple to understand. As it is an extendable markup language, users can create their own tags or use tags created by others. Tags, unlike HTML, are also adjustable, and they indicate the structure of the document and how it should be saved and transmitted.

About the author

Taimoor Mohsin