X-Ray diffraction (XRD) provides an excellent tool for the measurement of both stress and texture (preferred orientation) on fabricated damascene interconnect structures. Since x-ray diffraction provides a direct measurement of lattice spacings, film strain can be measured directly. Also, since the intensity of diffracted x-rays is proportional to the density of lattice planes oriented in diffracting condition with respect to the incident beam, both the direction and extent of preferred orientation can be accurately measured. Special techniques and considerations are necessary when examining damascene interconnect structures with XRD which are not necessary with blanket films. These techniques are discussed and described in order to aid in obtaining meaningful XRD data and a correct interpretation of the results.