Core functions

Last updated 4 months ago


xxf:document-id() as xs:string`

Each time an XForms document is created, typically when a user requests a page, it is assigned a unique id.

This function returns the current XForms document (or page)'s unique id.


$avt-expression as xs:string
) as item()*

This function is similar to saxon:evaluate() or xxf:evaluate(), but instead of evaluating an XPath expression, it evaluates a string representing an attribute value template.



$template as xs:string,
$params as item()*
) as xs:string

The xxf:format-message() function allows you to format a localized message based on a template and parameters.

  • the first parameter is a template string following the syntax of the Java MessageFormat class

  • the second parameter is a sequence of parameters that can be referenced from the template string

The following types are supported:

  • string (the default)

  • number (including currency and percent)

  • date

  • time

The function uses the current language as would be obtained by the xxf:lang() function to determine a locale.

Example with number, date, time, and string:

'At {2,time,short} on {2,date,long}, we detected {1,number,integer} spaceships on the planet {0}.',

This produces the following output with an en-US locale:

At 7:25 PM on July 23, 2010, we detected 3 spaceships on the planet Mars.

Example including a choice:

'There {0,choice,0#are no files|1#is one file|1&lt;are {0,number,integer} files}.',

This produces the following outputs, depending on the value provided:

There are no files.
There is one file.
There are 1,273 files.

NOTE: It is important to pass dates and times as typed values. Use xs:dateTime(), xs:date(), or xs:time() if needed to convert from a string.


xxf:lang() as xs:string?

The xxf:lang() function returns the current language as specified with the xml:lang attribute.

The xml:lang value to use is determined this way:

  • if the element containing the xxf:lang() function has an xml:lang attribute, that attribute is used

  • otherwise, the first ancestor element of the element containing the xxf:lang() function that has an xml:lang attribute is used

xml:lang is supported in the following locations:

  • for a static xml:lang value

    • on any XForms element

    • on the top-level <xh:html> element

  • for a dynamic xml:lang value (using an AVT)

    • only on the top-level <xh:html> element

NOTE: xml:lang attributes on HTML elements other than the top-level <xh:html> are ignored for the purpose of the xxf:lang() function.

NOTE: Format of the locale is currently restricted to the form "en" or "en-GB". Support for BCP 47 would be desirable.

Example of static values:

<xf:group xml:lang="it">
<!-- This output produces the value "it" -->
<xf:output value="xxf:lang()"/>
<!-- This output produces the value "zh" -->
<xf:output value="xxf:lang()" xml:lang="zh"/>

Example with an AVT:

<xh:html xml:lang="{instance()}">
<xf:model id="model">
<xf:instance id="instance">
<!-- This output produces "it" based on the top-level AVT, which
contains the value stored in the instance -->
<xf:output value="xxf:lang()"/>
<!-- This output produces "zh" -->
<xf:output value="xxf:lang()" xml:lang="zh"/>

When calling the xxf:lang() function from an XBL component:

  • xml:lang is first searched as described above

  • if no xml:lang value is found in the XBL component, then the xml:lang value of the XBL bound element is searched


<xbl:binding id="fr-foo" element="fr|foo">
<!-- The xml:lang value of the bound element is used -->
<xf:output value="xxf:lang()"/>
<!-- The xml:lang value is "zh" -->
<xf:output value="xxf:lang()" xml:lang="zh"/>


[SINCE Orbeon Forms 2018.1]

$template as xs:string,
$lang as xs:string,
$params as map(*)
) as xs:string?

This function fills a string template with values passed separately.

  • $template: template of the form:

    My name is {$name}. I am {$age} year-old.
  • $lang: language for formatting of parameters

  • $params: name → value XPath map

Example with xmlns:map="" in scope:

'My name is {$name}. I am {$age} year-old. I own $ {$amount}.',
map:entry('name', 'Marco Polo'),
map:entry('age', 42),
map:entry('amount', 12.99)

This evaluates to:

My name is Marco Polo. I am 42 year-old. I own $ 12.99.

NOTE: As Orbeon Forms 2018.1, parameters are formatted per Java's MessageFormat. It is expected that in the future, these values will be formatted as they are with xf:output, and possibly configurable. If the exact format is important, instead of passing xs:integer, xs:date, etc. types, format the value as an xs:string first before passing it as parameter.


xxf:property($property-name as xs:string) as xs:anyAtomicType?

The xxf:property() function retrieves the value of a property defined in properties-local.xml.

This function returns the following:

  • empty sequence if the property is not found

  • xs:string, xs:integer, xs:boolean or xs:anyURI depending on the actual type of the property

<xf:setvalue ref="my-property" value="xxf:property('')"/>


The purpose of this function is to automatically resolve resources by name given the current language and an XForms instance containing localized resources.

xxf:r($resource-name as xs:string) as xs:string
xxf:r($resource-name as xs:string, $instance-name as xs:string) as xs:string
  • $resource-name: resource path of the form The path is relative to the resource element corresponding to the current language in the resources instance.

  • $instance-name: name of the resources instance. If omitted, search orbeon-resources and then fr-form-resources.

The function:

  • determines the current language based on xml:langattribute in scope where the function is in used

  • resolves the closest relevant resources instance

    • specified instance name if present

    • orbeon-resources or fr-form-resources (for Form Runner compatibility) if absent

  • uses the resource name specified to find a resource located in the resources instance, relative to the resource element with the matching language


<xf:instance id="orbeon-resources" xxf:readonly="true">
<resource xml:lang="en"><buttons><download>Download</download></buttons></resource>
<resource xml:lang="fr"><buttons><download>Télécharger</download></buttons></resource>
<xf:label value="xxf:r('')"/>

[SINCE Orbeon Forms 2018.1]

The function supports filling a template with parameters when the $params is supplied:

$resource-name as xs:string,
$instance-name as xs:string,
$params as map(*)
) as xs:string

In this case, the function fills the template as with the xxf:process-template() function.


xxf:rewrite-resource-uri($uri as xs:string) as xs:string

Rewrite a URI as an Orbeon Forms resource URI.