How do I use substring in xsl?

Posted on 2013-01-15
Last Modified: 2013-01-18

I have the below xsl code:

<xsl:value-of select="substring(@Description,1,250)" disable-output-escaping="yes" />
<xsl:if test="string-length(@Description) &gt; 250">...</xsl:if>

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This displays the first 250 characters of the description, and "..." if there are more characters in the description than being displayed. How can I alter this so only 50 characters are displayed? When I changed both instances of "250" to "50" no text was shown?

Question by:aspnet-scotland
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LVL 60

Expert Comment

by:Geert Bormans
ID: 38780444
well, did you not change anything else?

changing 250 to 50 in both instances is the way to go

maybe you only have spaces in the first 50 chars?
LVL 60

Expert Comment

by:Geert Bormans
ID: 38780456
maybe you need to tell us what happens next to the result of this XSLT
Maybe you have a process in place that removes a text if not long enough

Bottomline as an answer to your question is
250 to 50 should work in this isolated case
but check what happens next

Author Comment

ID: 38780512
Strange....when I reduced it to "100" only around 20 characters were shown, I guess there must be white space hidden somewhere as firebug doesn't show anything?

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LVL 60

Accepted Solution

Geert Bormans earned 500 total points
ID: 38780545
Well, if it is bigger than 50, you should see the "..."

A browser does away with spurious white-space
A good test could be

<xsl:variable name="norm-desc" select="translate(normalize-space(@Description), ' ', '_')"/>
<xsl:value-of select="substring($norm-desc,1,250)" disable-output-escaping="yes" />
<xsl:if test="string-length($norm-desc) &gt; 250">...</xsl:if>

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This takes out all sequences of whitespace in favour of a single underscore
(if you leave out the normalize-space, you will see all spaces as underscore)

It will help you to guess the number of whitespace in your input

Author Comment

ID: 38782064
Thanks for your code. I can see that all whitespace have now been replaced with an underscore but no rogue whitespace seems to be present. I seem to have lost around 50 characters somewhere. Strange.

LVL 60

Expert Comment

by:Geert Bormans
ID: 38782077
Maybe if you could post the source XML and the full stylesheet, that could help

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