If you are working on PC then you may encounter files with .xml extension or if you have a website and you want to submit sitemap for better SEO, you will need .xml file, so if you are new to this, you might want to know, what is XML file and how to open XML in Windows, in this article, I will provide you all the details regarding XML file.

What is XML file?

XML stands for Extensible Markup Language (XML) and XML file's ends with .xml extension. It is formatted like HTML document, but uses custom tags to define objects and the data within each object.

XML is a markup language created by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) to define a syntax for encoding documents that both humans and machines could read, similar to HTML but XML contains custom tag with values inside it.

XML files are basically used to transfer information between different programs on internet.

Sample XML file:

<?xml version="1.0" ?>
    <name>Jane Doe</name>
    <name>John Doe</name>

The first line is the XML declaration header that should be used for all XML files.

The second line and the last line are the start and end tags for the root element, respectively. Those three lines, the declaration header and the start and end tag of the root element represent the minimal XML file.

You can open .XML file using text editor like Notepad to view the XML structure as shown above, but it is better to open it using Chrome or any other browser, let's see in the next section how to open these files.

How to open XML file in Windows 10?

There are few ways using which you can open XML file in windows 10 without needing any external software, let's take a look on them one by one.

Using Notepad

Well this one is very easy, to open XML file using notepad, you can use below steps:

  1. Navigate to XML file
  2. Right-Click on XML document
  3. Select "Open-With"
  4. Select "Notepad" to open it as text file.

Here is the image sample.


Open XML file using Chrome Browser

Yes, you have read that right, you can open XML files using Chrome browser also, which is again in similar way. (I Consider you have already installed Chrome Browser)

  1. Navigate to XML file
  2. Right-Click on XML document
  3. Select "Open-With"
  4. Select "Chrome Browser" to open it and view in a tree-view (If you cannot see Chrome browser in sugggestions, you might need to select "Choose Another app" -> Click "More Apps"-> Click "Look for another app on this PC" -> In the new window, if you have chrome installed, browse to location "C:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Chrome\Application" -> Select "Chrome" -> Now you will see it in "Open with", select "Chrome browser" and click OK)


Set Default app to open XML

  • Type Default programs in the search bar on Windows 10 and select the top 1 from results.
  • Associate a file type or protocol with a program under Choose the program that Windows use by default in the Default Program Window.
  • Select the .xml file type in the Associate a file type or protocol with a program Window and click on Ok.

There are few more apps, to open XML file and edit or update it, which would be better, like

  1. Visual Studio Code
  2. Microsoft XML Notepad
  3. File Viewer Plus

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