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XML DOM Browser Differences


Browser Differences in DOM Parsing

All modern browsers support the W3C DOM specification.

However, there are some differences between browsers. One important difference is:

  • The way they handle white-spaces and new lines

DOM - White Spaces and New Lines

XML often contains new line, or white space characters, between nodes. This is often the case when the document is edited by a simple editor like Notepad.

The following example (edited by Notepad) contains CR/LF (new line) between each line and two spaces in front of each child node:

<book>
  <title>Everyday Italian</title>
  <author>Giada De Laurentiis</author>
  <year>2005</year>
  <price>30.00</price>
</book>

Internet Explorer 9 and earlier do NOT treat empty white-spaces, or new lines as text nodes, while other browsers do.

The following example will output the number of child nodes the root element (of books.xml) has. IE9 and earlier will output 4 child nodes, while IE10 and later versions, and other browsers will output 9 child nodes:

Example

var xmlDoc=loadXMLDoc("books.xml");

var x=xmlDoc.documentElement.childNodes;
document.write("Number of child nodes: " + x.length);

Try it yourself »


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