macOS Open XML File


I have successfully installed Atom on my MacBook. When I selected an XML file to open, a message displayed giving me two options: To either download ‘XCode’ from the App Store, or ‘Install’ command line tools. I went ahead and selected ‘Install’ command line tools.

I’m not quite sure what I’ve chosen to install. Can someone please clarify for me? Also, where can I find what I selected to install?

Many thanks in advance.


You are probably talking about the XCode Commandline Tools. If you want to open an XML file with Atom, just drag & drop it on the Atom icon (or window). To permanently assign Atom as viewer for XML files, mark any XML file and press Cmd+I, pick Atom from the dropdown list and click on Change all.


Thank you for the reply and explanation. Did I do the right thing, when I chose to install the XCode Command Line Tools?

Also, if I ever stop using Atom, can I uninstall the tools? And where are they installed on my Mac?

Thank you


You don’t need to install XCode or XCode Developer Tools. Atom can open XML files without these.


Are you using any packages that interact with XML files?


Thank you both for the replies. How strange. My Atom installation was new, and the first file I selected to open was an XML file, generated from the Android app - SMS Backup and Restore. When I selected the file to open, a message displayed asking me to either visit the Mac App Store to download/install XCode, or to install the Developer Tools (I chose this option, and did not have to leave Atom to install the tools).

If I ever uninstall Atom, will these tools be uninstalled with it? Or, have they been installed elsewhere, and how can I find them?

Thank you.


What happens if you open another XML file? Do you get the same message? If so, can you post a screenshot of it?


I guess that XCode is simply the default application for XML files, but since it’s not installed by default, you were directed to the App Store


Thanks for the replies. For information, I didn’t install XCode. However, I think ‘some tools’ were installed, when I clicked on the Install button, as I opened the XML file.

XML files now open without issue.

At some point, I will need to uninstall Atom from my Mac. When I do so, will the ‘tools’ that installed also be uninstalled along with Atom, or will I need to look else where for them?

Thanks again.


No, as mentioned before, the tools are not related to Atom at all. You can remove them by deleting the /Library/Developer/CommandLineTools folder.


Thank you. Can I delete from the command line by running the command:

rm -rf /Library/Developer/CommandLineTools