Merging xml files with maxscript in 3dsMax

It’s a hassle to work with multiple xml-files in maxscript at the same time. However it may be desirable to keep separate xml-files on disk. You can combine these xml-files at runtime into a single xml-file in memory while retaining the separate files on disk. This helps when using xpath for instance to search for specific elements in the xml. When working with multiple xml-files, you need to merge them together before performing an xpath query.

In my case I wanted to keep my xml-files on disk separate and not modify them by merging them to a single file. To make sure xpath worked smoothly I merged the xml-files together in a single file in memory by using the “Import”-function.
Also check out the documentation by microsoft on importing nodes on msdn.

This is a maxscript example

xmlDoc = dotNetObject "system.xml.xmlDocument" --setup the main xml document
tempDoc = dotNetObject "system.xml.xmlDocument" --setup a temporary xml document to load the xml values from the disk-files one by one
arrPath = #("path1","path2","path3") --an array of filepaths to multiple xml-files on disk
for i = 1 to arrPath.count do --iterate over the filepaths
tempDoc.load arrPath[i] --load up the xml-file from disk. Store it in the temporary xml document
local theNode = xmlDoc.ImportNode tempDoc.documentElement True --get the main node from the temp doc as an import from the main doc
xmlDoc.documentElement.appendchild theNode --append the import-node

This results in an xmlDocument in memory which contains the contents of several xml-files. You can leave it at that and perform your actions on the xmlDocument in memory or you can store that xmlDocument to disk for later use. (@"someNicePath.xml")

For more info on using xpath in maxscript, check out this article on my blog.
For some real xml and maxscript kungfu check out Pete Addington’s site:
For a nice breakdown of xml in maxscript check out Paul Neale’s tutorials here and here.

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