Create an empty XML file

Last Published: April 25, 2020


Empty XML files are useful for creating metadata templates and for creating metadata documents describing resources that are not available online. For example, you might create an empty XML file and then use a metadata editor to add information describing a paper map, an atlas, or data that has been archived on tape.


To manually create an empty XML file:

  1. Open a text editor such as Notepad.
  2. Copy the following lines and paste them into the text editor:
<?xml version="1.0" ?>
  1. Save this text as an .xml file. For example, using Notepad:
    a. Select File > Save As.
    b. In the Save as type drop-down list, select All Types.
    c. In the File name text box type the filename including the .xml extension.
Do not name the file "metadata.xml"; ArcCatalog will assume it contains metadata describing the folder in which it was saved. Also, do not use more than one file extension; with a name like "myFile.txt.xml" XML files will not appear in the Contents list because ArcCatalog assumes the file contains metadata describing an item that is already listed.
  1. In ArcCatalog, right-click the folder in which the new XML file was saved and click Refresh.

Article ID:000005768

  • ArcMap 9 x
  • ArcMap 8 x

Receive notifications and find solutions for new or common issues

Get summarized answers and video solutions from our new AI chatbot.

Download the Esri Support App

Discover more on this topic

Get help from ArcGIS experts

Contact technical support

Download the Esri Support App

Go to download options