Preventing PHP Tidy from removing an empty tag?

Posted on 2004-10-08
Last Modified: 2008-02-07
I'm using PHP Tidy to clean up my HTML before it's sent to the browser.

We have a requirement to have a drop-down box with a blank (space) option, Yes, and No.

The html looks like this:

<select name="fieldname1" class="input">
<option value="" class="input" selected="true"></option>
<option value="Y" class="input">Yes</option>
<option value="N" class="input">No</option>

After Tidy gets ahold of this it changes it to:

<select name="fieldname1" class="input"><option value="N" class="input">
</option><option value="Y" class="input">

Does anyone have any idea as to how I can prevent Tidy from removing the empty <option> tag?

Thanks in advance,


Question by:ianwpugh
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
  • 3
  • 3

Accepted Solution

petoskey-001 earned 500 total points
ID: 12258646
don't leave it blank, use the non-breaking space instead ( &nbsp; )

<select name="fieldname1" class="input">
<option value="" class="input" selected="true">&nbsp;</option>
<option value="Y" class="input">Yes</option>
<option value="N" class="input">No</option>

This will give you what you want
LVL 12

Expert Comment

ID: 12258679
is PHP Tidy a program?

Expert Comment

ID: 12258749
TIDY is a HTML source compressor/formatter put out by the W3C.  
It's written in C and can be found online as "HTML Tidy".  
It's currently hosted on sourceforge at

It can take an ugly block of HTML code and turn it into something nicely formatted.

See for some examples
See to use the CGI version on any publicly accessable URL
Technology Partners: We Want Your Opinion!

We value your feedback.

Take our survey and automatically be enter to win anyone of the following:
Yeti Cooler, Amazon eGift Card, and Movie eGift Card!

LVL 12

Expert Comment

ID: 12258864
Good stuff, thanks petoskey-001, will go have a look now and download it and ofcoz use it.... Thanks again :)

Expert Comment

ID: 12259756
BTW offtopic but I noticed you have your first 10,000.  For more fun also track you rank and percentage.
For instance in Member Rank (view rank link) it shows your 4408 of 60428 experts so your at 92% of people who have more then 0 points.  It's surprising how fast you climb and just how far apart the real top people are.
LVL 12

Expert Comment

ID: 12259979
Yeah, thanks for the info, I am pretty much new to this EE thing, still finding my way round the place..... surprising ranking results... :)

Author Comment

ID: 12286459
Thanks for the advice.

After looking through the XML that's used to generate the HTML, I found the error was actually in the HTML parser, not Tidy.. Heh.. Thanks anyway :)

Featured Post

Online Training Solution

Drastically shorten your training time with WalkMe's advanced online training solution that Guides your trainees to action. Forget about retraining and skyrocket knowledge retention rates.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

Suggested Solutions

Popularity Can Be Measured Sometimes we deal with questions of popularity, and we need a way to collect opinions from our clients.  This article shows a simple teaching example of how we might elect a favorite color by letting our clients vote for …
Generating table dynamically is the most common issue faced by php developers.... So it seems there is a need of an article that explains the basic concept of generating tables dynamically. It just requires a basic knowledge of html and little maths…
The viewer will learn how to look for a specific file type in a local or remote server directory using PHP.
The viewer will learn how to create and use a small PHP class to apply a watermark to an image. This video shows the viewer the setup for the PHP watermark as well as important coding language. Continue to Part 2 to learn the core code used in creat…

751 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question