XML Documentation (Visual C++)

In Visual C++, you can add comments to your source code that will be processed to an .xml file. This file can then be the input to a process that creates documentation for the classes in your code.

In a Visual C++ code file, XML documentation comments must be located directly prior to a method or type definition. The comments can be used to populate the Intellisense QuickInfo data tip in the following scenarios:

  1. when the code is compiled as a Windows Runtime component with an accompanying .winmd file

  2. when the source code is included in the current project

  3. in a library whose type declarations and implementations are located in the same header file


In the current release, code comments are not processed on templates or anything containing a template type (for example, a function taking a parameter as a template). Adding such comments will result in undefined behavior.

For details on creating an .xml file with documentation comments, see the following topics.

For information about


The compiler options to use


Tags you can use to provide commonly used functionality in documentation

Recommended Tags for Documentation Comments

The ID strings that the compiler produces to identify the constructs in your code

Processing the .xml File

How to delimit documentation tags

Delimiters for Visual C++ Documentation Tags

Generating an .xml file from one or more .xdc files.

XDCMake Reference

Links to information about XML as it relates to Visual Studio feature areas

XML in Visual Studio

If you need to put XML special characters in the text of a documentation comment, you must use XML entities or a CDATA section.

See Also


Component Extensions for Runtime Platforms