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php – SimpleXML: Selecting Elements Which Have A Certain Attribute Value

Posted by: admin April 23, 2020 Leave a comment

Questions:

In an XML document, I have elements which share the same name, but the value of an attribute defines what type of data it is, and I want to select all of those elements which have a certain value from the document. Do I need to use XPath (and if so, could you suggest the right syntax) or is there a more elegant solution?

Here’s some example XML:

<object>
  <data type="me">myname</data>
  <data type="you">yourname</data>
  <data type="me">myothername</data>
</object>

And I want to select the contents of all <data> tags children of <object> who’s type is me.

PS – I’m trying to interface with the Netflix API using PHP – this shouldn’t matter for my question, but if you want to suggest a good/better way to do so, I’m all ears.

How to&Answers:

Try this XPath:

/object/data[@type="me"]

So:

$myDataObjects = $simplexml->xpath('/object/data[@type="me"]');

And if object is not the root of your document, use //object/data[@type="me"] instead.

Answer:

I just made a function to do this for me; it only grabs the first result though. Your mileage may vary.

function query_attribute($xmlNode, $attr_name, $attr_value) {
  foreach($xmlNode as $node) { 
    switch($node[$attr_name]) {
      case $attr_value:
        return $node;
    }
  }
}

Usage:

echo query_attribute($MySimpleXmlNode->Customer, "type", "human")->Name;

(For the XML below)

<Root><Customer type="human"><Name>Sam Jones</name></Customer></Root>