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Add RSS to Expression web

This tutorial explains how to add xml - rss to an expression web.

RSS and XML are fast becoming the normal way to get snippets of information out to your users. Your user will view the xml headlines and if they like what they see, will click the link to read the full story on your site. XML can be used in many different ways but for now will will concentrate on displaying rss / xml feeds in your expression web site template.


This tutorial assumes that you already have an xml file in your web. If you don't, you can download the example file here. Also note that this will not work unless your host provides ASP.NET 2.00

Creating the page

Click on File | New and select aspx

Expression web will open a new aspx page for your.

Click and drag your xml file into the form box on the new aspx page. The xml file contents will be displayed immediately. However, the default display is not the best so lets change the layout.

Click on the little arrow at the top right of the aspx xml display box. This will bring up the Common Data View Tasks dialogue box. Select page layout.

There is a number of xml display formats but we will just use the second one. Click on it and then click ok.

Once again back EW you will notice that the format change is instant.

The only problem we have is that the hyperlinks (link) are not clickable! We can easily change this in the following way.

Double click on the first hyperlink in the displayed xml on your page. This should highlight the hyperlink in blue.

Click on the hyperlink icon in the tool bar this will bring up the Insert Hyperlink dialogue box. At the bottom and to the right of the address box, click on the Fx icon. From the more fields pop up, select link from the item folder. Click OK. You will see that all the links are now clickable! Click OK to close the insert hyperlink dialogue box.

Test in your browser. You will likely be prompted to save your page and you will also be asked if you want to save the embedded files. You do as these are your styles.

Whilst you have successfully added an xml file to expression web, if your links go to pages outside of your site, you are driving your visitors away. So if you want your page to open in a new window, read on.

To open the link in a new window, all you have to do is click your cursor on the first link and then click on the hyperlink icon in your tool bar. In the insert hyperlinks pop up box, click on target frame and then select new window.

Save your work and test. You will now have an RSS feed in your expression web that when the links are click on will open the page in a new window.

Obviously if your links all point to pages in your web, you would skip the last section of this tutorial.

I hope this mini expression web tutorial has been helpful.

A flash tutorial can be found here.

The working example can be found here.

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Microsoft MVP


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