Additional FOR XML Features

Just about all of the original XML support first introduced in SQL Server 2000 XML support revolves around FOR XML, a feature that is still very much underused by developers. Since then, SQL Server has enhanced FOR XML in the following ways:

  • Using the TYPE option, FOR XML can output to an xml data type (as opposed to streamed results) from a SELECT statement, which in turn allows you to nest the results of SELECT…FOR XML into another SELECT statement.

  • The FOR XML PATH option allows you to more easily shape data and produce element-based XML than the FOR XML EXPLICIT option that we just covered.

  • You can explicitly specify a ROOT element for your output.

  • You can produce element-based XML with FOR XML AUTO.

  • FOR XML can produce ...

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