XSL (English Extensible Stylesheet Language ) is a public company listed in the XML family of transformation languages ​​for defining layouts for XML documents. The XSL XSLT sublanguage is also used in another XML or text format for translation / transformation of an XML format.

(Also called stylesheets ) references to layouts can be integrated into the to format XML documents, which allows the layout to assign specific media. It is possible to use a layout for printing and a layout for the display of the computer.


Among XSL

  • The XML-based actual XSL ( named for distinction XSL Formatting Objects XSL -FO ), for the description of a document as a tree with markup and style information
  • The XML-based XSL Transformations ( XSLT) to transform any XML document into another tree
  • And, indirectly, XPath for addressing tree components.

Areas of application

The three languages ​​(XSL -FO, XSLT, XPath) can be collectively referred to as XSL or use independently.

A document might, for example, equal in XSL -FO Post, a procedure applied in practice to design new layouts.

XSLT can not only transform according to XSL-FO, but in any XML-based language, or in formats that are not XML. In practice, XSLT is comparatively rarely used with XSL. Much more common XSLT is to be found in Message Oriented Middleware or Presentation Oriented Publishing, XML-based, the latter is far more common uses XHTML for use on the WWW as XSL -FO. XSLT is so common with other XML - based languages ​​used as with XSL-FO.

XPath is used for XSLT XSLT Patterns and XQuery.


XSL goes back to the developed by James Clark DSSSL. Unlike DSSSL XSL provides two significant changes:

  • XML - based syntax
  • Separation of languages ​​for transformation (XSLT ) formatting (XSL -FO ) and the tree addressing ( XPath) in separate and independently usable languages

The first Working Draft of XSL still treated all components in a document and was released in August 1998. During the development of XSLT and XPath have been moved to separate documents. XSLT 1.0 and XPath 1.0 was adopted in November 1999, XSL itself in October 2001.

The current latest version of XSLT 2.0 and XPath 2.0 was adopted on 23 January 2007.


  • See also XSLT for different XSLT processors
  • DIGIFORMS Graphic xsl -fo designer, commercially
  • FOP Open Source
  • Xmlroff Open Source
  • XEP commercially
  • AXF commercially
  • Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 commercial
  • Antenna House Formatter commercial ( German )
  • XSL editor and debugger commercially
  • XF Rendering Server commercially
  • Xml2PDF Server 2007 commercially
  • XSL / XSLT Editor & Debugger ( English) Retrieved on August 28, 2011. Commercially