Tips & Tricks

XML productivity tips

IntelliJ IDEA is not “only Java” IDE. If you have a license, you don’t need a separate XML editor (as well as HTML/CSS or JavaScript ones). These editors come with IntelliJ IDEA “out-of-the-box”.
Here is a couple of links that may help you with being more productive with XML editing:

One more useful tip is that IntelliJ IDEA completes XML documents even if no schema is specified. All tag and attribute names and values are completed based on what you are typing. IntelliJ IDEA tracks your input and suggests new tag names and attributes for already used tags. It also filters out attributes that have already been specified for a tag, so you don’t have to worry about duplicates.
For example, you typed a tag like this:

<shopitem pricestandard=”200″ pricediscount=”180″ pricevip=”150″ group=”1″ qty=”1000″ id=”188839″/>

When you are about to create another shopitem tag and start typing “price” attributes, you will get the completion:

Start typing another attribute, and IntelliJ IDEA will help you avoid duplicates by removing what you already typed from completion list.

Edit XML with pleasure!

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3 Responses to XML productivity tips

  1. Avatar

    Alessandro Vernet (XForms) says:

    June 28, 2006


    I am glad to see you write about the IntelliJ XML editor. I really think you have there one of the best XML editors on the market, one that we like to recommend in person to our clients and through our blog the to our community.

    I am also really looking forward to seeing some the new XML-related features you will have in the upcoming IntelliJ 6.0.


  2. Avatar

    Alexandra Rusina says:

    June 29, 2006

    Hi Alessandro,
    First of all, thank you for the nice article at your blog.

    As for XML editor improvements in IntelliJ IDEA 6.0, here is the short list:
    * Structural search and replace support
    * “Remove enclosing tag” intention action (opposite to “surround with”)
    * xsd:redefine support
    * DocBook support

    Most of this features are already implemented and you can try them in the latest EAP version of IntelliJ IDEA 6.0 (to download EAP version, visit

  3. Avatar

    David M. Lloyd says:

    November 4, 2008

    It seems that xsd:redefine support is still not complete in 7.0. Is this something we’ll see in 8?