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Using following-sibling in XPath

In this part of tutorial we are going to describe you how one can use "following-sibling" axis in to the XPath expression.

Using following-sibling in XPath


In this part of tutorial we are going to describe you how one can use "following-sibling" axis in to the XPath expression. "following-sibling" has some other working rather than "following" axis because it selects all siblings following the context node.

In this example also we have created an XML file "persons.xml" as in our previous section, which is necessary to execute XPath query or expression on to it. This "persons.xml" contains information related to name, age, gender of different persons. 

Here is the full source code for persons.xml file as follows :




<?xml version="1.0" ?>
  <person id="1">
 <person id="2">
  <person id="3">

  <!-- more persons... -->

Now we have declared a class XPathFollowSibling class and in this class we are parsing the XML file with JAXP. First of all we need to load the document into DOM Document object. We have put that persons.xml file in that current working directory. For downloading document we have created a new instance of DocumentBuilderFactory and then this instance is further going to be used in creating an object of DocumentBuilder

  DocumentBuilderFactory domFactory = 

  DocumentBuilder builder = domFactory.newDocumentBuilder();
  Document doc = builder.parse("persons.xml");

Above lines of code parses "persons.xml" file and creates a Document object. Next we have created XPath object with the use of XPathFactory.

XPath xpath = XPathFactory.newInstance().newXPath();

tells that the parser produced by this code will provide full support for XML namespaces.

Expression "//following-sibling::*" will select all the following sibling of root node "information".
 Here is the example code for as follows:

import org.w3c.dom.*;
import javax.xml.xpath.*;
import javax.xml.parsers.*;
import org.xml.sax.SAXException;

public class XPathFollowSibling {

  public static void main(String[] args
 throws ParserConfigurationException, SAXException, 
  IOException, XPathExpressionException {

  DocumentBuilderFactory domFactory = 
  DocumentBuilder builder = domFactory.newDocumentBuilder();
  Document doc = builder.parse("persons.xml");
  XPath xpath = XPathFactory.newInstance().newXPath();
    XPathExpression expr = xpath.compile("//following-sibling::*");
 // Selecting all element's following-sibling name 
  Object result = expr.evaluate(doc, XPathConstants.NODESET);
  NodeList nodes = (NodeListresult;
  for (int i = 0; i < nodes.getLength(); i++) {
  expr = xpath.compile("//following-sibling::person/*/text()");
 // Selecting all person element's following-sibling value  
  result = expr.evaluate(doc, XPathConstants.NODESET);
  nodes = (NodeListresult;
  for (int i = 0; i < nodes.getLength(); i++) {
 System.out.print(nodes.item(i).getNodeValue()+",  ")


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Posted on: September 29, 2008 If you enjoyed this post then why not add us on Google+? Add us to your Circles

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