RE: [xsl] How to select a document element from the input xmlfileusing xslt?

Subject: RE: [xsl] How to select a document element from the input xmlfileusing xslt?
From: "Belkin, Alla" <abelkin@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 12 Jul 2004 16:49:29 -0500
Thank you very much!
I will try!

Alla Belkin

-----Original Message-----
From: Wendell Piez [mailto:wapiez@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx]
Sent: Monday, July 12, 2004 4:27 PM
To: xsl-list@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: [xsl] How to select a document element from the input
xmlfileusing xslt?


I'm afraid you may have confused your friendly instructors by referring
a "document element". Reading your post, I infer what you mean by this
the DOCTYPE declaration, i.e. that thing at the top of your input file
looking like

<!DOCTYPE element SYSTEM "http://delete.dtd";>

... but this isn't an element at all, much less the "document element"
which is something else entirely (it's the element at the top level of
document, the one that contains everything else, that is whose end tag
appears at the end of the document).

Jumping ahead -- as you've found, you can control what your processor
writes as a DOCTYPE declaration in xsl:output -- but only up to a point.

What you *can't* do (as you found) is parameterize this control or make
dynamic in any way, by (for example) wrapping it in an xsl:choose. This
because it is not really an XSLT instruction, but only a literal value
processor hands to the serializer to use when it writes the output file.

More control over this will be possible in XSLT 2.0, but in the meantime

the way people handle this is by using stylesheets to write stylesheets.

The first stylesheet writes a stylesheet, which is then executed in a
subsequent pass. This is what the posts responding so far have been
at: since you can't control this string directly, you do it indirectly
creating the entire stylesheet dynamically (!).

But I think this is overkill for you. Rather, I think you'll do better
handle your conditional logic outside the stylesheet altogether. Have

templates.xsl contains all your templates.

deletedoc.xsl contains (only) the following:

<xsl:include href="templates.xsl"/>
<xsl:output method="xml" doctype-system="http://delete.dtd"/>

and updatedoc.xsl contains the same, only invoking update.dtd.

Then you need only to implement logic in the calling environment to call

deletedoc.xsl for "delete" documents, and update.xsl for "update"
documents, and you're there. (How you do this will depend, of course.)

This is the XSL-orthodox way to do it: XSLT is designed on the
that the host system knows how to delegate each type of document to its
proper stylesheet(s), and doesn't mandate (or include) any way to manage

that delegation itself. But by using xsl:include, you manage to share
templates (and maintenance) between what are formally two different
stylesheets. (You could also use xsl:import.)

If this isn't sufficient, please say why and we'll try to clear it up


At 03:10 PM 7/12/2004, you wrote:
>Hi Alla,
>Your implementation is read by the xslt processor and when it comes
><xsl:output... it doesnt know that you want it to output <xsl:output...

>but instead assumes you are declaring the <xsl:output../> element.  As
>probably already know the <xsl:output element must be a direct child of

><xsl:stylesheet...> and cannot be inside of a template or anywhere
>the first xsl:template element is declared...  The way to accomplish
>you are trying to do is to use the <xsl:element name="xsl:output"> and
>then add the necessary attributes using <xsl:attribute
>name="method">xml</xsl:attribute> etc...
>Hope this helps!
>Belkin, Alla wrote:
>>I am using a stylesheet for modifications of the input xml file to the
>>different format of the xml file.
>>My output file should have a document element, the same as in the
>>file. How to copy a document element? I can have input XMLs with
>>different document elements. I tried to do something like this, but it
>>doesn't work:
>>         <xsl:when test="count(//Delete)  &gt; 0">
>>                 <xsl:output method="xml"
>>         </xsl:when >
>>         <xsl:when test="count(//Delete) = 0">
>>                 <xsl:output method="xml"
>>         </xsl:when>
>>Please, help
>>Thank you,
>>Alla Belkin
>Wendell Piez                            mailto:wapiez@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
>Mulberry Technologies, Inc.      
>17 West Jefferson Street                    Direct Phone: 301/315-9635
>Suite 207                                          Phone: 301/315-9631
>Rockville, MD  20850                                 Fax: 301/315-8285
>   Mulberry Technologies: A Consultancy Specializing in SGML and XML

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