Looking for a good XML editor

I do a lot of work with XML. I mean, if you’re involved with JEE development in any way it is inescapable. Work with Web Services? Even more so.

For a long time I’ve been looking for a really good XML editor. I’ve looked at the expensive beasts from Altova but they just don’t feel right to me. Besides, they look to be a never ending money pit of upgrades.

I’ve used the XML editor offered by the MyEclipseIDE plugin for Eclipse. It’s fine but I don’t always care to fire up the behemoth that is Eclipse and, besides, Eclipse has this funny notion about only editing files under registered projects in a workspace. I often want to edit an XML file at some random disk location without creating an Eclipse project to contain it.

editix.jpg

Recently I’ve been using Editix. Editix is written in Java and, as a result, is supported on most platforms. I like it enough that I bought a license but it still isn’t perfect. For one thing the format XML feature fills in every attribute (optional or not) defined in the DTD or schema and does not seem to have any concept of pretty printing. After filling in all the attributes for an element if it is 10,000 characters long, Editix is happy to present you that element on a single line. To me it makes this feature unusable.

I like that it supports XPath/XQuery and lets you plug in any JAXP compliant parser. I’m still not overjoyed but I’m living with Editix.

Go ahead – make my day. If you know of a really great XML tool please let me know about it.

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