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There are many changes in Saxon 9.6. These changes, together with a full history of changes in previous releases are comprehensively listed in the Change History.
Saxon 9.6 includes highly-conformant implementations of the latest W3C Recommendations: XSLT 2.0, XQuery 3.0. XPath 3.0, and XSD 1.1. It also has an advanced implementation of the latest working draft of XSLT 3.0 (which is nearly completion). See Standards Conformance for more details.
In addition Saxon continues to offer conformant implementations of XSLT 2.0. XPath 2.0, XQuery 1.0, and XSD 1.0. When invoking Saxon, there are options to control which version of the spec should be used: the default is always to use the latest version that has reached Recommendation status at the time of the software release.
Saxon 9.6 can also be used to run XSLT 1.0 stylesheets. Although it does not actually include an XSLT 1.0 processor, XSLT 2.0 with backwards-compatibility enabled will execute almost any 1.0 stylesheet with identical results.
This documentation covers three Saxon editions: home, professional, and enterprise (HE, PE, and EE). The Home Edition remains open source (under the Mozilla Public License 2.0). An outline of what is present in each edition can be found in the feature matrix. Broadly speaking, Saxon-HE includes support for published W3C recommendations at the minimum conformance level; Saxon-PE includes support for optional W3C features and for Saxon extensions, and Saxon-EE includes features needed for advanced applications and high performance. See also Choosing a software package.
This documentation covers Saxon on both the Java and .NET platforms.
A full change log is provided.
If you are looking for an XSLT 1.0 or XPath 1.0 processor, Saxon 6.5.5 remains available. However, Saxon 9.4 is capable of executing XSLT 1.0 stylesheets with identical results in the vast majority of cases, often with much better performance, so you may prefer to use the latest release.