Simple XML conformance

Edd Dumbill edd at
Mon Jan 17 00:16:18 GMT 2000

On Mon, Jan 17, 2000 at 10:19:28PM +0000, Peter Murray-Rust wrote:
> Is there a definitive resource anywhere which explicitly states what
> behaviour can be expected from various types of parsers? I know it is
> inferable from the spec, but I suspect that not all implementers have taken
> identical interpretations. I would ideally like to have a matrix of parsers
> against standard "correct" [not always "valid"] documents and see how many
> conform.

David Brownell's conformance testing using the NIST/OASIS test suite may
be of some help here (see
<> and 
<>) although several of
the tools tested have had new releases since the time of testing.

The output of his test runs show a comprehensive report, e.g. see for the
results for XP.

Also, see recent threads on this list concerning the recently published
XML 1.0 errata and their bearing on the NIST/OASIS test suite.  (There
is an XMLhack story with links to the relevant messages, see

> Henry and I are obviously keen to show that XML is simple to use with the
> correct tools and that interoperability is achievable. 

It is perhaps a little unfortunate that you're having to put effort into
showing this. However, it is my impression that most XML parser vendors
are taking XML 1.0 compliance seriously.

It also sets off an interesting train of enquiry. Aside from David's
conformance tests, how many other people have tried to prove parser
interoperability in development or production situations, and with what


Edd Dumbill ----/ voice: +44 702-093-6870 fax: +44 870-164-0230 /----
 | Managing Editor,                          <>
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