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XSL Tools Requirements

Revision as of 10:37, 3 January 2008 by D a carver.yahoo.com (Talk | contribs) (Debugging)

What should the initial requirements be for XSL Tools 1.0 release. Note that not all ideas will necessarily make it into the first release. Please use this page to make your suggestions as well as enter an enhancement request in the Web Tools Incubator component. If you do make a bug/enhancment request, please put the bug number here and link to it as well.

XSL Tool Features Requests


  • bug 213855 - XSLT shouldn't rely on JDT to function, particularly for XSL Launching configurations as every XSL transformer extension could have a differen requirement to launch. Potentially the XSL transformer could be non-java based.
  • Launching should be able to run either a simple pipeline or a more complex pipeline using XProc as the configuration language. An yac is an example of an xproc processor.
  • Possibly have pre-existing Launch configurations that can be modified for Docbook, Dita, and Schematron launching.
  • Allow for the launching of externally defined XSLT processors. This should be user configurable. This would be an alternative to the ones provided by providers through extension points.


  • bug 214235 - Ability to view the Nodes that are in a result set/node set.
    • DC - 2008-01-03 - Currently all variables whether they are strings or nodes, all display the same in the variables view. Need to allow Node Expansion of Node result sets, and display strings as variables.
    • DC - 2008-01-03 - Also should be able to view the current node that a template is acting on either in the variables view or as a seperate view.
  • Ability to put break points in both the source xslt as well as the xml input file.
  • Ability to put break points in any stylesheet that is included or imported, and have it stop at the break point.
  • See all variables that are currently in scope for the xslt being debugged.
    • 2008-01-03 - Basic functionality implemented.
  • bug 213850 Ability to set the XML Input before Debugging begins, if launched from Debug As-> and no existing launch configuration has been created.
  • bug 213766 Make sure line and column numbers are displaying in the xml editor when in debug mode.
    • DC 2008-01-03 - Tested with current branch. This is working correctly. Line numbers and column nummbers are displaying.
  • A view to see what the current Result Document would look like, and what it looks like at the end of a transformation.
  • If transforming to HTML or XHTML, allow preview of the currently debugging result in a Browser view.
  • Ability to step between Java and XSL in the debugging process. This is useful for tools like Dita-OT that use both Java and XSLT in their build process.


  • bug 195028, bug 213852, bug 213854 - Content Assitance for all XSL elements that are in the namespace. It would also be nice to have content assistance automatically for any other namespaces that are known.
    • Some of this is already possible through the use of XML Catalog contributions, as the XML Editor will pickup any grammars that it finds and knows about in the XML Catalog that are in the source document.
  • bug 201954 - XPath creation, editing, and testing support.
  • bug 213775 - Configurable syntax highlighting for XSL. Allow differentiation between XSL elements and those not part of the XSL transformation namespace.
  • XPath support should have content assistances for select, match, and test attributes. This should provide AXIS as well as XPath function expressioin support. Along with any appropriate documentation for each of the functions.
  • Templates - we should provide a list of commonly used XSL templates both for new files and for attributes and elements.
  • Variable content assistance - When referencing a variable or parameter, we should provide content assistance for any variables or parameters that are in scope.
  • If a variable or paramater is unknown, CTRL-1 should provide available suggestions.
  • Make sure any compilation errors are highlighted with red squiggleys. Color of squiggleys should change depending on the severity of the error. Yellow for warning, red for error.
  • Provide template support for Call-Templates. If creating/defining/calling a named template, content assistance should be availble for the name attribute, providing a list of suggested names either have no template defined, or already have a template defined depending on the location where content assist was invoked.
  • Validation should not necessarily occur on all grammars in the XSLT, as this could lead to false errors, as XSLT templates will be inserted into elements that may not be expecting them. This is not an error itself.
  • Provide a view with the availability of all XPath functions or nodes that could be used at that particular point. Drag and Drop support would be nice to be added to the editor.
  • Possibly create just a Source editor for XSLT, as the existing Design view doesn't necessarily work well for XSLT development. Or create a new design view that allows graphical creation of an XSLT based on existing grammars or an existing XML instance.
  • Provide out of the box support for XSL templates for DITA, DocBook, and SchemaTron.
    • Include optional project creation for DocBook and DITA Eclipse Help System documentation. The Eclipse Help System option should create a plug-in.
    • Include optional project creation for Eclipse Corner Articles. The Eclipse Corner Articles should create a project that builds HTML pages from DocBook or DITA source. It would be nice for this option to be extensible by adopters so other publications like DeveloperWorks, which already supports XML + XSLT for authoring, can make use of the new project creation wizard.
  • Provide basic refactoring support.
  • Content Assistance for stylesheets that are include or imported. The parent stylesheet should be able to see variables, call-templates, with-params, etc from these imported and included stylesheets.


  • The ability to specify what should be validated and what shouldn't be validated.
  • Batch Validation of XSLTs in a directory.
  • How are XSLT's validated that may depend on external URI sources?