How To Beautify XML in Notepad++? With XML Tools Plugin For Formatting



Notepad++ XML formatter

It is possible, and even very easy, using Notepad++ software as an XML editor, to indent an HTML file, using the Notepad++ XML plugin called XML Tools, directly available in the Plugin Manager, which is built in Notepad++ - a great XML viewer by the way.

What is XML? XML is a text file standard that allows to format and share rich data, by including tags and attributes to be understood by text processing software. For example, HTML is a kind of specific XML format. But how to beautify XML in Notepad++ - the favourite text editing tool for Windows 10? See below how to indent and beautify any kind of XML data with only a software, a plugin, and a keyboard shortcut.

Notepad++ XML tools 2.4 11 download

How to get beautiful XML

If you haven't done it yet, start to install Notepad++ before proceeding.

Download Notepad++ 64 bit, an open source and free notepad, great XML file viewer

Starting with some raw HTML, XHTML, or any open XML file, without any indentation - meaning the HTML tags are not visually separated from each other.

Open the Plugin Manager‌ from Plugins menu.

There, scroll down to find the XML Tools, which should be available there by default. If it is not, you can always download Notepad plus plus from below repository, and see our other article to install plugin.

Notepad++ XML plugin XML Tools repository on SourceForge

Then, simply click install from the Plugin Manager, the rest should be automatic.

  Notepad++ cannot load 32 bit plugin on Windows

In case you have not updated your Plugin Manager‌ for a while, you might get a message telling you to update it before installing any new plugin, which is strongly advised.

An update is available to plugin manager. It is strongly advised that the Plugin Manager‌ is updated before any other plugin is installed or updated. Would you like to update the Plugin Manager‌ now ?

How to format XML file in Notepad++

Then, the installation will happen automatically, simply relax while it is progressing. Not counting the download time, it should take no more than 5 minutes to complete.

Before the end of the installation, Notepad plus plus will ask to restart alone. No worries, just like any update in Notepad++, no work will be lost, even if not saved. However, it is of course safer to save all open work before doing this operation :

Some installation steps still need to be completed. Notepad++ needs to be restarted in order to complete these steps. If you restart later, you will be prompted again. Would you like to restart now ?

Once Notepad++ has restarted, the XML Tools plugin is available in the Plugins menu, with all its useful options for XML notepad.

What is the difference between HTML and XML

The data indent with the XML parser - or HTML data indent, as HTML is a specific XML doctype among others, using a specific XML schema - select the Pretty print (XML only - with line breaks) in the XML Tools plugin, this will indent the whole data.

HTML to XML basically doesn't mean anything, as HTML is already written in XML language. XML and HTML are basically similar.

  Compare two text files with Notepad++

XML prettifier

And that's it, the HTML data should now appear properly indented, with visually easy to see separation between the different elements, would it be XML or HTML. It is particularly good to debug HTML, when errors like missing end of tags are reported by checks like the W3C validator, which can be used as an XML validator for HTML.

Notepad++ works that way as a very efficient XML beautifier, making code easy to read, troubleshot and share, probably the best notepad for HTML.


Good luck building your XML document and making great XML code, it should now be much easier with this XML reader ! Also works great for XML pretty print, get an XML file example and see for yourself how to XML structure is properly displayed. XML document structure is very important to respect the XML standard, and benefit from all features of XML.

Notepad++ portable is also a great way how to open XML, and works as well for XML indent
  Notepad++ open file in a new window

How to format HTML code in Notepad++

Using the plugin XML tools, select the auto indent option, also accessible with the keyboard shortcut CTRL + ALT + SHIFT + B.

It is also feasible using menu Plugins > XML Tools > Pretty print, that will indent code in Notepad++.

How do you indent XML in Notepad ++? Install XML Tools and use the pretty print function

How do you indent XML in Notepad ++?

To indent XML, start to open your XML files‌ in windows 10 in Notepad++ softbar, and by installing the XML Tools plugin. Then, use the keyboard shortcut CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+B. This will automatically indent your XML file in Notepad++.

The Notepad ++ automatic indentation shortcut will automatically update your XML data by adding spaces before each tag, and putting the opening and closing tags on the same level, thus allowing you to find out the content of any XML tag in your code visually, but also to expand or hide pieces of codes with the Notepad++ buttons plus and minus on the left hand side of the interface, right next to the line number.

Notepad++ XML formatter shortcut: CTRL+SHIFT+ALT+B
A really quick way to format your XML – use Notepad++ with the ‘XML Tools’ plug in

How to install XML tools plugin for notepad++ 64 bit

Download the latest XML Tools plugin package from SourceForge website.

Extract content in Notepad++ installation plugin folder, usually located at “C:\Program Files\Notepad++\plugins”, and restart Notepad++ to have the XML Tools plugin appear in Notepad++ plugins list menu.

Once the plugin is installed, the shortcut to format XML in Notepad++ is CTRL + ALT + SHIFT + B.

XML tools plugin for Notepad++ 64 bit

Unable to load LibXML and or LibXSLT

When getting the error XML Tools unable to load LibXML and/or LibXSLT after having installed the plugin with pluginManager on Notepad++, the solution is to download manually an older version of the plugin, and install the XMLTools library in a specific folder, and the libraries in Notepad++ root folder installation.

The issue should be solve in future versions of Notepad++ starting with 7.62, and work with future plugin manager, but it is actually not the case.

Download the older version 2.4.9.1 corresponding to your Notepad++ installation, x86 for 32bits and x64 for 64 bits.

Notepad++ older version download for working XMLTools plugin

Then, open the archive, and copy the library plugin file XMLTools.dll to the %programdata%\Notepad++\plugins\XMLTools folder. You will most likely have to create this folder yourself.

Then, copy all the libraries from the archive dependencies folder in the Notepad++ root installation folder %programdata%\Notepad++\plugins.

After that, try restarting your Notepad++, and check the plugins > XMLTools menu, the XML options should be accessible.

How to format XML in Notepad++



International Business Consulting
About the author - International Business Consulting
Yoann is an International Business Consultant, facilitator and coordinator. He worked more than 10 years in global business, supply chain, financial, SAP ERP projects, Web and SEO optimization for various industries, such as logistics, cosmetics, consumer goods, beauty care, or fashion, in more than 30 countries around the globe.
 


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