Parse an XML file issue

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If you wish to create an XML file and then parse it to use the containing information for some other logic you should keep in mind a small, but annoying “feature”.

Error :
-> org.xml.sax.SAXParseException: Content is not allowed in prolog.


Why:
-> Java known bug:

A Utf-8 stream can optionally beign with a byte order mark (see, for example http://www.unicode.org.unicode/faq/utf_bom.html). This is the character FEFF, which is represented as EF BB BF in utf-8. Java’s utf-8 encoding does not recognize this character as a BOM, though; the result of reading such a stream is a set of characters beginning with FEFF.

-> So, when the XML is generated, before the tag “<?xml…” there will be 3(or more?) hexadecimal characters that will make the parsing logic fail with honors. It looks something like this, although the characters I am using to demonstrate are not the exact ones: “Þ?u<?…”. This is not a valid XML Syntax(having other chars before the ‘<‘) and it will, of course fail when you want to parse it.

One Solution:

– read the XML and convert it into one string(ex. String temp), extract those characters before the “<?” and then create and array of strings resulting from spliting the temp variable. Walking through this array, append each string to a StringBuffer and then you are free to carry on with your logic. It can look something like this:

Other solutions can be found here, at this Sun Forum page .

If you have a more elegant solution for this  I would be glad to know, so feel free to leave a comment with it.
Enjoy :)

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