How to check that an RSS feed is valid


If you build you own RSS feed using a text editor, then it is best to check that it is valid, before uploading your website, including that you have not missed any < > tag symbols so that the feed is computer readable.



Automatic RSS feed checking


The easiest way to do this is to use the W3C online validator by visiting:


You will find that this validator is on the strict side.  You may get messages above encoding and the insistence on some attributes (like the atom link attribute) that aren't really necessary as when you subscribe to an RSS feed, the URL is already recorded.   Even the Google RSS feeds get validated but with a list of problems:


and the BBC World News feed:


One issue, we have come across a lot, is that the W3C validator insists on a rel="Self" line, which even Google and the BBC don't use.



Manually checking an RSS feed


If you want to manually check an RSS feed you have built yourself, then follow our build you own RSS feeds using Windows Notepad guide which takes you through step by step all the required things that need to be in an RSS feed and explains in detail all of the required attributes.   If you just want to check that your XML is correct, then you can put it through our free RSS feed formatter tool, which reformats RSS XML code and will tell you if there any errors.