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From Steven Noels <>
Subject Re: PERFORMANCE - attributes vs. elements
Date Fri, 02 Aug 2002 06:41:08 GMT wrote:

> I know this is a basic XML/XSLT question and is an old debate. I would like
> to know if using attributes as opposed to elements within XML will speed up
> its transformation using XSLT? I have a 3MB XML file which is transformed
> by my XSLT into HTML using Cocoon. I have a few tags in the XML file which
> could be tucked away as an attribute of its parent element. I hit upon them
> while I was trying to search every nook and corner for improving the
> performance. Right now it sucks. Please let me know if anybody has some
> tips & tricks for improving performance, kind of do's and dont's.

You really should look into the internals of the XSLT engine 
implementation you are using with Cocoon, then (being Xalan, XSLTC or 
Saxon) - but I don't offer you high hopes that switching between atts 
and elems will make much of a difference. I seriously doubt so. Maybe 
you can post your XSLT stylesheet for some peer review. There are many 
other ways to improve execution speed of XSLT.

Also, I consider your post to be slightly off-topic, there exists a 
*very* helpfull XSLT-centric mailing list at - with all the true XSLT gurus 
reading and answering such queries.


Steven Noels                  
Outerthought - Open Source, Java & XML Competence Support Center            

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