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You use DITAVALs to include or exclude conditional content in deliverables. In other words, DITAVALs are files that contain rules for conditional publishing.


The action attribute enables you to process profiled content in the following ways:

Includes content in the output.
Excludes content from the output.
Includes content in the output and preserves the attribute value for further processing. This may be useful for some outputs that include a filtering functionality.
Includes and flags content in the output.


By default, conditional content is processed in the following way:

  • Content that does not have a conditional profiling attribute assigned is included in the deliverable.
  • The default behavior of conditional profiling is to include content, so if you have only one condition, use only an exclude rule.

  • Conditions cannot be nested. Parent conditional elements take precedence over children conditional elements.


Keep the following guidelines when working with DITAVALs:

  • You can create generic DITAVAL files that apply to any map. We recommend using generic DITAVALs if there is not much conditional content in your documentation.

    Examples: customer_facing_online or internal_print.

  • You can create DITAVAL files that apply only to specific maps. We recommend using map-specific DITAVALs if there is a lot of conditional content in your documentation.

    Examples: map_title_customer_facing or map_title_internal_print.

  • Establish a DITAVAL naming convention to ensure that everyone in your organization can easily find and identify DITAVALs.
  • Create DITAVALs for all conditional profiles to ensure that you do not accidentally publish content that you want to filter out.
  • Apply conditions in the context of the deliverable or target map, rather than on content in a library or warehouse file.

  • Keep the maintenance of conditional profiling in mind as you apply conditions. For example, apply conditions to entire steps or paragraphs instead of words. If you need different terms in different contexts, consider using keys instead of conditional profiling.

Create a DITAVal

Create a DITAVAL containing include or exclude rules to filter content at publish or during editing.

  1. In the content library, navigate to a folder and click Create New.
  2. Select DITAVal to open the Create new window.
  3. Enter a name for the file.
  4. Optional: Create the file in a folder different from the current folder by clicking Change and selecting a new location.
  5. Optional: Assign the file to collections by clicking Collections and selecting collections from the list.
  6. Optional: Assign metadata to the file by filling in the Metadata fields.
  7. Click Create & Edit.
  8. Edit or remove the default property, or click Add Prop to add a new action.
You can use this DITAVAL to publish or filter your content as your edit or preview files in your content library. For more information, see Filter Content with a DITAVAL.

Filter Content with a DITAVAL

Use a DITAVAL to filter conditional content as you're previewing and editing files. This enables you to preview and edit files with conditional content, included or excluded depending on your DITAVAL, as they would display in the final output. For example, if your DITAVAL excludes content with the Audience conditional processing attribute set to internal, then any content with this value applied will not display when previewing or editing a file.
  1. In the content library, from the Context Map drop-down menu, select Add a ditaval filter.
  2. Navigate to and select a DITAVAL.
  3. Click Select.
When previewing or editing files, your conditional content is excluded or included based on rules in the selected DITAVAL.