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Lesson 9 - LINQ to XML in C# .NET

In the previous lesson, Working with XML files using the DOM approach in C# .NET, we introduced the DOM approach for working with XML files. In today's tutorial, we'll introduce the LINQ to XML technology which provides an advanced API for working with XML files in .NET and easily surpasses the SAX and DOM approaches which we went over in previous lessons. A comfortable way of working with XML files can perhaps be achieved using serialization/de­serialization. However, even this approach is limited when compared to LINQ to XML due to its dependence to an appropriate class existence or its need of a parameterless constructor and public properties.

Creating an XML document

Working with XML files using LINQ to XML is purely object-oriented and realized through the XDocument class. It's very similar to the XmlDocument class, which we introduced in the DOM approach. Meaning that we'll work with an XML document using the object model once again.

First, we'll need to create a simple XML file which contains some user data. Let's say it looks like this:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<user age="22">
  <name>John Smith</name>

Using XmlDocument, we would generate it as follows:


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In this tutorial, we'll generate, read, and edit XML files using the latest XML approach from .NET, i.e. LINQ to XML and the XDocument class.

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Article has been written for you by David Capka
The author is a programmer, who likes web technologies and being the lead/chief article writer at He shares his knowledge with the community and is always looking to improve. He believes that anyone can do what they set their mind to.
Unicorn university The author learned IT at the Unicorn University - a prestigious college providing education on IT and economics.
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