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Introduction to InfoPath 2010


A SharePoint-centric look at InfoPath 2010

A SharePoint-centric look at InfoPath 2010

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  • resourcesa number of workflow examples available on – including how to use state machines - how to use error handling


  • 1. Introduction to InfoPath 2010 A SharePoint-centric look at InfoPath 2010
  • 2. What is InfoPath 2010?  Form building tool for making standalone forms, and SharePoint list forms  InfoPath 2010 is actually 2 different products  InfoPath Designer 2010  InfoPath Filler 2010  Only available in Microsoft Office 2010 Professional Plus  Only the richest people get to play (slight downside, one might say)  SharePoint 2010 (and 2007 as well) have the capability to have a SharePoint document library (form library) contain a collection of InfoPath forms  Essentially, you associate a form with a document library, and the resulting answered forms are the contents of the library
  • 3. More About InfoPath 2010  Types of Forms  InfoPath based forms (to be filled in using “Filler”)  Web based forms  SharePoint 2010 Licensing – You will require the Enterprise CAL to:  Use a SharePoint list with InfoPath forms  Publish SharePoint library forms as web based forms  Features of InfoPath  Various UI controls  Layouts (pre-designed table formats)  Themes  Multiple views  Rules (the real bread and butter)  Data connectivity (more of an advanced topic)
  • 4. InfoPath Rules  Rules are like the application programming logic for your form  Types of Rules • Can be used to specify an error message that Validation will be displayed if a condition is false • Changes the “look and feel” of the UI elements Formatting (show/hide, color, fonts, etc.) • Connect data connections to your form fields Action • Set input parameter values from form fields • Assign results back to the fields  All of the rule logic is done without code, for example  Populate a drop down with values  Generate unique incrementing ID values  Pre-fill portions of a form with  Perform real-time validation of user existing data input
  • 5. The Kinds of Data InfoPath Can Use • Soap • Rest Web Services • WCF (.Net) • Azure • SQL Server • ODBC Databases • OLE-DB • Oracle • SharePoint XML Files • File Server • Convenient alternative to SharePoint Lists / Libraries using a database table
  • 6. SharePoint and FormsDoesn’t it already do forms without InfoPath?  Yes, SharePoint forms are great, they’re simple and easy to use  They’re available on every list and library  No need for any “client” side tools to create the forms – they’re automatically updated when you modify the list or library  However, this may be a little too simple – no customization possible in SharePoint  For customization, you can download and install SharePoint Designer and modify your forms. However…  Often people aren’t given access to SharePoint Designer (by their administrator)  Lots of individuals aren’t comfortable with SharePoint Designer  The tool can be hard to use/understand for novice users
  • 7. Where does InfoPath differ?  InfoPath allows you to create powerful, rich forms  The forms do not require you to write any code  This allows non-developers to both create them and maintain them  You can create forms with  Both out of the box and complex validation rules  Lookups to external or SharePoint data  Master / Detail lists  Signed forms  Essentially none of these are available with default SharePoint list forms  Can be used with SharePoint custom workflows and Nintex workflows (very easily)  And it’s simply just a really easy to use product to get the hang of  “InfoPath is very much a rapid development tool. SharePoint list forms cannot do even a fraction of what InfoPath does, and InfoPath does it all without writing code.” - Clayton Cobb, (former) InfoPath MVP – Current SharePoint MVP
  • 8. What’s new in 2010?  Ribbon interface  Form Templates (when building a new form)  Quick rules  pre-built conditions and actions  Create forms for SharePoint lists  Use SharePoint Workspace for offline form completion of SharePoint lists  New controls  Picture Buttons, hyperlinks, date & time picker  Publish form templates  Quick Publish (to SharePoint)  Filler and Designer separated  Kind of similar to how Adobe has Acrobat and Acrobat Reader
  • 9. Demo 1 Customizing SharePoint lists Show off various features of InfoPath Multiple views Various controls Layouts (pre-designed table formats) Themes Rules Other ribbon features
  • 10. Demo 2 Rules – from the basic to the complex The Setup… itgroove uses an InfoPath form for time entry records for all their consultants Some of the rules are basic, simple rules to perform simple tasks (like change to a different view) Other rules are more complex and chain together to make multiple actions appear to happen simultaneously Other, more complex/cool forms
  • 11. Tabs!
  • 12. Multi-views (1/2)
  • 13. Multi-views (2/2)
  • 14. In Summary… InfoPath Can:  Be your form product of choice  Enable easy rule logic and provides plenty of capacity for scaling that logic  Powerful and extensive data connectivity InfoPath combined with SharePoint Enables  Easy form creation for both lists and libraries  Very neat and tidy forms OOTB, with easy modifications to add themes and change layouts  Brings form design to anyone with a license to Microsoft Office Professional Plus
  • 15. Q&A + Contact Any Questions? Contact Details: InfoPath: Colin Phillips ca/infopath/