SPSNJ 2013 Building Business Solutions using InfoPath
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  • 1. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar Presented By: Prashant G Bhoyar Building Business Solutions Using InfoPath 05 October 2013
  • 2. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar Who am I? • SharePoint Consultant at Portal Solutions • Product - AuthentiMate • Services – We love SharePoint .. • Guy with multiple hats • University of Maryland College Park Alumni • Recipient of Antarctic Service Medal
  • 3. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar What Will We Cover Today? • InfoPath • InfoPath and SharePoint • Browser based Forms • InfoPath Deployment • Limitations of InfoPath • Future of InfoPath
  • 4. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar Why InfoPath?
  • 5. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity Why InfoPath in SharePoint? • InfoPath Forms Services • Browser Support • Local Installation is not required • Easy to create • Empowered non coders • Out of the Box • Formatting/Presentation • Validations • Rules • Calculations • Logic
  • 6. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity Examples of InfoPath in SharePoint • Leave System • Time cards • Performance reviews • Collaborative budgeting • Status reports • Service requests • Recruiting • New project initiation • New hires / terminations
  • 7. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar InfoPath Client Based Technologies • InfoPath Filler • Used by End Users to complete the forms or “fill it in” • Can’t be use to design form templates • Need InfoPath client to use • InfoPath Designer • Used by Designers to design and publish form templates
  • 8. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar Typical InfoPath Life Cycle
  • 9. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity InfoPath Forms in SharePoint • Standard InfoPath Forms • Usage Scenario : • Users create new form • Fill the information and • Promote certain fields to forms library (Property Promotion) • List Forms • Upgrade the List associated forms to InfoPath forms
  • 10. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity Browser Based Forms • No local installation of InfoPath client • Inherits SharePoint’s core functionalities • Any options that cannot be rendered in a browser is hidden. For Example (Spell-Check, The Vertical Label, Ink Picture, Signature Line, Scrolling). Full list can be found here http://office.microsoft.com/en-gb/infopath-help/infopath-2010-features- unavailable-in-web-browser-forms-HA101732796.aspx • Available only with Enterprise Client Access License (eCAL) for SharePoint 2010. • Not available in SharePoint Foundation or SharePoint Standard Server
  • 11. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar
  • 12. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity InfoPath List Forms in SharePoint • Advantages • Easy to customize • Add validations, rules • Formatting/Presentation
  • 13. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity InfoPath List Forms in SharePoint • Drawbacks • SharePoint adds additional information to list and content type like hidden fields, absolute urls • Deployment to other site collection, Web Application and Farms • Resolution: Save list as template (.stp) and deploy
  • 14. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar DEMO
  • 15. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar
  • 16. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity InfoPath XSN and XML Files • XSN or Form Template is collection of several files packaged into a cabinet (.cab) file • Forms are stored in SharePoint in the form of XML files • Inherits core SharePoint functionalities (Versions, Recycle Bin etc.) • Information is “Human Readable” …
  • 17. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity Data Connections • Sources • Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) Web Services • Representational State Transfer (REST) Web Services • SharePoint lists • Database • XML file
  • 18. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity Data Connection Library • List designed to store data connection files for use in InfoPath • Data connection details are not stored in the form • Details of system to which the form connects are not hard- coded into the form • If connection details change, only the data connection must be updated. This avoids needing to update and redeploy the form
  • 19. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar DEMO
  • 20. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity Save and Submit • Use InfoPath toolbar options Save and Save As • No control over where the forms get saved, or what filenames are used. • Custom Submit Button • Email • Web Service • Hosting Env • Web Server • Data Connection • SharePoint Document Library
  • 21. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar InfoPath Forms Data • Store in form itself • Open the form to see the info • Difficult to crawl the information • Publish in Library/List – “Property Promotion” • Create list views • Can be used by other Workflows • Used as look up field • Search
  • 22. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar DEMO
  • 23. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity InfoPath Forms Web Part SharePoint • Consistent look and feel • Use of InfoPath Forms Web Part • Provides a range of options for rendering • Avoid if Form is complex and has multiple views
  • 24. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar DEMO
  • 25. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar InfoPath Deployment
  • 26. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar InfoPath Deployment LessComplexity • Deploying to a Form Library • InfoPath Designer requires direct access to SharePoint Server • Form will be available in specific site/library • Deploying to a Content Type • Creates a new content type • Available in List and Libraries of Site • Cons: • Need to deploy manually to all site collections • Manually associate content type with list/library
  • 27. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar InfoPath Deployment Administrator Approved Forms Templates • Available only in On-Premise version • Allows InfoPath form to be reused throughout the entire SharePoint farm • Easy to maintain, as we need to do change at one location only • Only option for deployment for code behind • To deploy: • Save the Form template • Upload to Central Admin • Use the option “Activate to a site collection” for each site collection
  • 28. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar DEMO
  • 29. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar
  • 30. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity Alternatives to InfoPath Alternative Advantages over InfoPath Disadvantages over InfoPath Ideal Usage When not to use SharePoint List Forms -Very Quick to Design -Can be upgraded to InfoPath -No technical Skills Required -No control over Presentation -When very simple Info is required -When time and resource are Limited -Presentation is important -Time and Resources are available Custom SharePoint Web Parts - Can meet exact requirements (Custom Code) -Difficult to maintain without developer -Need complete control over UI -Want to avoid custom code Custom SharePoint Application Pages (ASP.NET Pages) - Can meet exact requirements (Custom Code) -Difficult to maintain without developer -Need complete control over UI -Want to avoid custom code
  • 31. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar
  • 32. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar LessComplexity Is InfoPath Right Choice? • Yes if, • Forms that must be designed by a non-technical user (Power User) • Custom Code is not allowed • Forms that will benefit from rich conditional formatting • Forms that must be designed rapidly • Solution will be hosted in cloud vs on Premise
  • 33. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar References Appendix/Resources SharePoint 2010 Enterprise Architect's Guidebook By: Brian Wilson; Reza Alirezaei; Bill Baer; Martin Kearn Using Microsoft InfoPath 2010 with Microsoft SharePoint 2010 Step by Step By: Darvish Shadravan and Laura Rogers MSDN: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint/default.aspx Blogs : http://www.andrewconnell.com/blog/my-thoughts-infopath-2013- the-future-of-infopath
  • 34. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar Princeton SharePoint user group • Different SharePoint discussions each month on various topics. Announced on meetup.com • Meets 4th Wednesday of every month • 6pm – 8pm • Infragistics Office • 2 Commerce Drive, Cranbury, NJ • http://www.meetup.com/prin cetonSUG • http://www.princetonsug.com
  • 35. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar Thank You Event Sponsors • Platinum & Gold sponsors have tables here in the Fireside Lounge • Please visit them and inquire about their products & services • To be eligible for prizes make sure your bingo card is signed by all Platinum/Gold
  • 36. #SPSNJ @PGBhoyar Questions? Feedback? Contact me:  Twitter: @PGBhoyar  Blog: http://pgbhoyar.wordpress.com ( limited contents )  Email: pgbhoyar@gmail.com Thank You Organizers, Sponsors and You for Making this Possible.