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XML DOM Advanced


The XML DOM - Advanced

In an earlier chapter of this tutorial we introduced the XML DOM, and we used the getElementsByTagName() method to retrieve data from an XML document.

In this chapter we will explain some other important XML DOM methods.

You can learn more about the XML DOM in our XML DOM tutorial.


Get the Value of an Element

The XML file used in the examples below: books.xml.

The following example retrieves the text value of the first <title> element:

Example

txt=xmlDoc.getElementsByTagName("title")[0].childNodes[0].nodeValue;

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Get the Value of an Attribute

The following example retrieves the text value of the "lang" attribute of the first <title> element:

Example

txt=xmlDoc.getElementsByTagName("title")[0].getAttribute("lang");

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Change the Value of an Element

The following example changes the text value of the first <title> element:

Example

x=xmlDoc.getElementsByTagName("title")[0].childNodes[0];
x.nodeValue="Easy Cooking";

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Create a New Attribute

The XML DOM setAttribute() method can be used to change the value of an existing attribute, or to create a new attribute.

The following example adds a new attribute (edition="first") to each <book> element:

Example

x=xmlDoc.getElementsByTagName("book");

for(i=0;i<x.length;i++)
  {
  x[i].setAttribute("edition","first");
  }

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Create an Element

The XML DOM createElement() method creates a new element node.

The XML DOM createTextNode() method creates a new text node.

The XML DOM appendChild() method adds a child node to a node (after the last child).

To create a new element with text content, it is necessary to both create a new element node and a new text node, and then append it to an existing node.

The following example creates a new element (<edition>), with the following text: First, and adds it to the first <book> element:

Example

newel=xmlDoc.createElement("edition");
newtext=xmlDoc.createTextNode("First");
newel.appendChild(newtext);

x=xmlDoc.getElementsByTagName("book");
x[0].appendChild(newel);

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Example explained:

  • Create an <edition> element
  • Create a text node with the following text: First
  • Append the text node to the new <edition> element
  • Append the <edition> element to the first <book> element

Remove an Element

The following example removes the first node in the first <book> element:

Example

x=xmlDoc.getElementsByTagName("book")[0];
x.removeChild(x.childNodes[0]);

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Note: The result of the example above may be different depending on what browser you use. Firefox treats new lines as empty text nodes, Internet Explorer does not. You can read more about this and how to avoid it in our XML DOM tutorial.



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