Customizing the Formatting and Appearance of TestStand XML and ATML Reports


This document explains options for customizing the appearance or formatting of reports in TestStand XML or ATML.


Before discussing report customization, it is important to understand that TestStand can generate two types of XML reports:

  • XML format: Extensible Markup Language (XML) reports that validate against the TestStand Report schema, which conforms to the XML W3C Schema
  • ATML format: Automatic Test Markup Language (ATML) reports that validate against the ATML Test Results and Session Information schema the ATML standard defines. This standard also conforms to the XML W3C Schema.  Note: By default, TestStand 2012 and later generate ATML rather than XML reports.

Because XML is a markup language designed to contain only raw data, without any formatting information, TestStand XML and ATML reports utilize style sheets (.xsl files) to translate the data into a readable HTML format.  

TestStand includes a number of style sheets, located in the following directories:

XML stylesheets


ATML stylesheets


In the Contents tab of the Report Options dialog box, you can select the style sheet TestStand uses to generate XML and ATML reports. You can also customize the style sheet directly to implement additional formatting changes.

For general information on customizing style sheets, refer to an external XSL language reference, such as  the w3schools: XSL tutorial. Stylesheets include a combination of HTML tags to define formatting, and <xsl> tags (which use the XPath syntax) to access data from the XML file, for example:  

<td align="center">
 <span style='font-size:0.6em';>
   <xsl:value-of select="./Prop[@Name="TS"]/Prop[@Name='StepId']/Value"/>

Creating XPath expressions that comply with TestStand XML or ATML reports requires knowledge of how the XML reports TestStand generates are structured.  This structure is defined in a schema file (.xsd), located in the same directory as the stylesheets folder. Additionally, you can see how reports are structured by inspecting the XML source of existing reports.

To help you get started with these customizations, instructions for implementing common customizations to the TestStand style sheets are available in the TestStand help topics below:

To ease customization, The TestStand style sheets are divided into sections with similar operations. For a discussion of these sections and documentation on what they do, see the subtopic Sections in XML Style Sheets.

Note: Before customizing a default TestStand stylesheet, copy the existing style sheet file to the corresponding directory in the <TestStand Public> folder, and only apply changes to the copy.  This way, you can easily revert to the original style sheet if necessary by deleting the copy.


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