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  • XSLT-Debugger

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Comment: docs updated - IDEA will now correctly download dependent plugins

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Description

The XSLT-Debugger plugin allows to debug XSLT stylesheets in IntelliJ IDEA with various useful features a debugger should have, including breakpoints, watch expressions, variables display, etc. It is tightly integrated with IDEA which allows it to be efficiently used without much need to familiarize first.

Note
titleRequirement

The plugin requires at least version 3 of the "XPathView + XSLT-Support" plugin. UnfortunatelyIf this isn't installed yet, IDEA doesn't will automatically download and install it , so this has to be done when installing the XSLT-Debugger plugin. If an earlier version is already installed, please upgrade the plugin manually.

Features

The following sections contain a list of the major features that are provided by the XSLT-Debugger that help to develop and debug XSLT stylesheets in IntelliJ IDEA with pleasure.

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Tip
titleXPath Expressions

Each expression can use any XPath function that is supported by the XSLT processor and any variable that is visible at the breakpoint's location. You'll note that you don't have to type everything yourself: There's code completion and validation for functions and variables.

Info
titleSuspend Policy

For both log- and trace-expressions it is possible to specify the "Suspend Policy" (as it is called by IDEA's Java Debugger): If the "Suspend" checkbox is checked, the execution of the stylesheet will also be paused when the breakpoint triggered.

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When paused, the XSLT-Debugger displays the complete call-stack for the current location. The "Frames" tab shows the stack of XSLT-instructions, while the "Source" tab shows the positions in the transformed source document, i.e. the stack of the context nodes.

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When selecting a different frame in the "Frames" tab, the debugger will open the corresponding XSLT file and highlight the selected frame's position in that file. It will also update the "Variables" tab to show the visible variables and their values. Any expressions in the "Watches" tab will be recomputed for the changed context.

The source frames are displayed as a unique XPath location path together with the containing file's name and the line number. Navigating to these frames is possible as well, either by double-clicking an element or by pressing the "Navigate to Source" keyboard shortcut (usually F4). The debugger will then open the corresponding XML file and position the cursor at the selected node's position.

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execution_control
execution_control

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When the debugged process is suspended at a breakpoint, the "Variables" tab will show all variables visible in the current scope. Global variables, local variables and parameters are distinguished by different icons.

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It's also possible to navigate to a variable's declaration, either from the variable node's context menu or by the keyboard shortcut for "Navigate to source". The same is possible for each node in a nodeset which navigates to the source of the selected node in the containing XML file. If for some reason the location of a node cannot be determined, the Navigate to Source action is disabled.

To copy the string-value of a variable or node into the clipboard, press Ctrl-C or invoke the "Copy Value" action from the context menu.

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watches

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Expression Evaluation

On the toolbar of the "Variables" tab there's an action that opens a dialog which allows to evaluate arbitrary expression. The evaluation works just like the evaluation of a watch expression.

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The tree is updated each time the debugger is paused. Nodes that have been generated since the last time the debugger was suspended are marked with a blue "*" to indicate that it's a new node. Element nodes that aren't closed yet contain a node at the end with the text "..." to indicate that more content is expected.

To find out which XSLT instruction generated a specific node, right click the node and select "Navigate to source". This will open the XSLT file at the position that produced the node.

The toolbar of the "Structure" tab contains the following actions: The "Hide Whitespace Nodes" action will make the tree hide all text-nodes that only consist of whitespace. This can be useful to see only the really relevant nodes. The actions "Expand All" and "Collapse All" allow quickly expand and collapse the whole tree.

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The plugin is available for IntelliJ DEA 7.0 via the built-in plugin manager and at the IntelliJ Plugin Repository.

Info
titleInstallation

Please ensure that The XSLT-Debugger requires version 3 or later of the XPathView + XSLT-Support plugin is installed before or together with the XSLT-Debugger, otherwise IDEA will complain that it is missing and disable the XSLT-Debugger. If this happened, it is required to explicitly enable the XSLT-Debugger plugin again when XPathView + XSLT-Support has been installed. If it's not installed yet, IDEA will usually automatically download and install it. If an older version is already installed, please upgrade the plugin manually.

Known Issues

Note
titleMute Breakpoints

The "Mute Breakpoints" action currently doesn't work for XSLT-breakpoints. This action does not affect XSLT Breakpoints, i.e. they will stay active.

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  • Bugfixes, internal refactorings, stability improvements

Version 1.1.1 (2007-12-18)

  • Online Help added

Version 1.1.2 (2007-12-21)

  • Documentation updated