Suppose we have a xml document, now we need to search for an item in it.
We can do this using SelectSingleNode method which is used to locate an element. The SelectSingle-Node method requires an XPath query to be passed into the method. See the sample xml document below,

<?xml version=”1.0″ encoding=”us-ascii” ?>
<node text=”Topics”>
<node text=”Corporate”>
<node text=”Best Places to Work”>
<node text=”Health Fairs” />
<node text=”Pharma”>
<node text=”General Medicines”>
<node text=”Arthritis “>
<node text=”Osteoporosis” />
<node text=”Oral calcitonin” />

So, if I want to find an item ‘Arthritis’ in the xml document, I have to do this,

string BzFocusxmlpath = @”C:\Program Files\ BizFocus.xml”;


string strParentVal = “”;       

XmlDocument xmlDoc = new XmlDocument();


XmlNode node;

node = xmlDoc.SelectSingleNode(“//node[@text=‘Arthritis’]”);

string snode = node.OuterXml;


Now, snode will return a value <node text=\”Arthritis”><node text=\”Osteoporosis\” /><node text=\”Oral calcitonin\” /></node>
which is the value of all nodes under General medicines, so, how do we extract only “Arthritis”?
Here, some C# coding will help,

int intindex = snode.IndexOf(“>”);

string strsubstr = snode.Substring(0, intindex); //will return “<node text=\”Arthritis “”

string[] strstarray = strsubstr.Split(‘=’);

string strStoreBizVal = strstarray[1].ToString(); // will give “\”Arthritis 

string strStoreBizValParent = “”;

// For removing “\” and “/” characters from string

strStoreBizVal = strStoreBizVal.Replace(“\””, “”);

strStoreBizVal = strStoreBizVal.Trim();

if (strStoreBizVal.Contains(“/”))


    strStoreBizVal = strStoreBizVal.Replace(“/”, “”);

    strStoreBizVal = strStoreBizVal.Trim();


So, our strStoreBizVal now  contains, ‘Arthritis’.


Now, suppose we want the hierarchy of the item in the xml file, like,

‘Arthritis’ is under parent node ‘General Medicine’, ‘General Medicine’ is under ‘Pharma’ and that is under ‘Topics’.

So, what if we want to display the whole hierarchy as,

Topics|Pharma|General Medicines|Arthritis” ?

For this, we need to traverse the xml document to get the hierarchy of parent and child, we can do this using simple recursive C# code, refer to the above xml code where the top most node is <TreeView> so, we traverse the Parent nodes till we reach there, see below

while (node.ParentNode.OuterXml.StartsWith(“<TreeView>”) == false)


    strParentVal = node.ParentNode.OuterXml;

    int intindexParent = strParentVal.IndexOf(“>”);

    string strsubstrParent = strParentVal.Substring(0, intindexParent);

    string[] strstarrayParent = strsubstrParent.Split(‘=’);

    strStoreBizValParent = strstarrayParent[1].ToString();

    strStoreBizValParent = strStoreBizValParent.Replace(“\””, “”);

    strStoreBizValParent = strStoreBizValParent.Trim();

    if (strStoreBizValParent.Contains(“/”))


strStoreBizValParent = strStoreBizValParent.Replace(“/”, “”);

strStoreBizValParent = strStoreBizValParent.Trim();


    strStoreBizVal += “|” + strStoreBizValParent;

    node = node.ParentNode;


string strFinalBizVal = strStoreBizVal;


// Now we get “Arthritis|General Medicines|Pharma|Topics“, since we are traversing from below so the top most node appears last, so we have to reverse the string to get “Topics|Pharma|General Medicines|Arthritis


string strReverseBizVal = “”;

string[] strReverseBizValArr = strFinalBizVal.Split(‘|’);

for (int j = strReverseBizValArr.Length -1; j >= 0; j–)


    strReverseBizVal += strReverseBizValArr[j].ToString() + “|”;


strReverseBizVal = strReverseBizVal.Remove(strReverseBizVal.LastIndexOf(‘|’));


This will give me, “Topics|Pharma|General Medicines|Arthritis”