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Funnel your Info down a new Path

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InfoPath provides business users with a familiar, feature rich means of creating dynamic, powerful electronic forms. While it has been around since the 2003 release of Microsoft Office, InfoPath 2010 combined with SharePoint 2010, is a match made in heaven.

InfoPath is heavily integrated into SharePoint 2010, and users can now create engaging forms within minutes and without writing a single line of code. This presentation will show you how you can start leveraging InfoPath to funnel your business information down a new path. Demos, gotchas, tips & tricks will all be a part of this 10,000 foot view of Microsoft InfoPath as it relates to SharePoint 2010.

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Funnel your Info down a new Path

  1. 1. SharePoint Saturday Louisville, Kentucky July 28, 2012Funnel your Info down a new Path Ryan Dennis
  2. 2. About The SpeakerRyan Dennis, MCTS, MCITPSenior SharePoint Engineer @ ICCMicrosoft Virtual Technology Specialist (vTSP) www.SharePointRyan.com @SharePointRyan linkedin.com/in/ryandennis ryan@sharepointryan.com
  3. 3. What is a VTS?The Microsoft Virtual Technology Specialist Program(VTSP) is…• a select group chosen from the elite in Microsoft’s partner community• their primary role is to communicate the value of Microsoft Solutions to customers and to provide architectural guidance for Enterprise Integration solutionsVTSPs also:• have guest access to information on the Microsoft corporate network such as knowledge bases, technical articles, training materials, and other resources• guest access to Microsoft facilities• priority for participating in Microsoft marketing events
  4. 4. General Information• Tweet it Out!! – Hashtag for this event: #SPSLouisville – Follow us: @SPSLouisville – Include your presenters• Check out SPTV – Man on the street interviews… – Footage will be shown at http://mysp.tv
  5. 5. Clean-Up Items• Fill out your evaluation forms!• Visit the Dugout for a sneak peak of SharePoint 2013 and Networking.• See you back at Home Plate for the Closing and Raffles!!
  6. 6. Tonight’s SharePint is generously sponsored bySharePint is being held right here at the Marriottimmediately following the event. Visit theRackspace booth for your ticket.For each unused drink ticket turned back in, a $5donation will be made to charity.
  7. 7. SharePoint Saturday Louisville has beenmade possible because of a generoussponsorship from the following friends…
  8. 8. What is InfoPath?• …a forms-creation and data-gathering tool to streamline business processes…• …a tool for advanced business users to design sophisticated electronic forms with no code…• …a point-and-click way to connect to LOB systems using data connections…
  9. 9. Ok Ryan, so what is it really?• An awesome way for you to make data entry fun, engaging and powerful…• A brilliant front-end to SharePoint list and library data…• …an Office program…
  10. 10. And it works with SharePoint? • InfoPath forms can be used in SharePoint in multiple ways, including… – List Forms • Customize existing SP Lists – Browser-based Library Forms • Publish form templates for viewing in the browser – Client-based Library Forms • Publish advanced form templates for viewing in the InfoPath client – Workflow Forms • Modify SharePoint workflow forms using InfoPath for a richer experience – Web Service Forms • Automatically create forms based on Web Services
  11. 11. What licensing do I need?• Client (InfoPath Designer) – Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010• Server (Forms Services) – SharePoint Server 2010 Enterprise*Without SP Enterprise, you can publish yourforms to SharePoint and launch them in theclient – but the InfoPath client is then requiredon every machine
  12. 12. 4 Main Types of Forms inSharePoint…• List form – Modify an existing list form using InfoPath• Browser-based form template – Publish a form template for browser use• Client-based form template – Publish a form template for client use• Workflow form – Modify Workflow forms
  13. 13. WORKING WITH SHAREPOINT LIST FORMS
  14. 14. CREATING A SHAREPOINT LIST FORM
  15. 15. • Created a standard Contacts List in SharePoint 2010• Customized the List Form using InfoPath 2010• Modified a few fields for better user experience• Added some AdventureWorks branding elements• Had fun doing it…
  16. 16. WORKING WITH SHAREPOINT LIBRARY-BASED FORMS
  17. 17. • Utilize a form template (XSN file)…• Are stored in a SharePoint Form Library…• Can leverage data connections and external content types…• Provide more functionality than list-based forms…• Can be launched within the browser, in an InfoPath Form Web Part or in the InfoPath Form Client**Some features which are supported in client-based forms are notsupported in browser based forms. More info later…
  18. 18. Business User IT Administrator I don’t want I want to to give you create sites!!! permission to create sites…
  19. 19. USING A WEB SERVICE FORM TO CREATE SITES
  20. 20. • Created a browser-based form template based on a web service schema…• Connected it to the Sites.asmx Web Service…• Used the form to create a site request for a new subsite under our Site Collection…• Used an Approval workflow to manage the site request…• Had a lot of fun doing it…
  21. 21. Funneling your Info down a new Path… WORKING WITH SHAREPOINT RECORDS CENTER SITES
  22. 22. • InfoPath Forms can be sent to a Records Center, but there are some issues… – The Form Template exists in the source site collection, thus the form won’t open… – By definition, a Records Center is a locked down site – shouldn’t have dynamic files such as forms with workflow• There are some cool opportunities here…
  23. 23. Convert forms to PDF• There is no out-of-the-box way to do this, but… – There are 3rd party tools – You can write your own…• Why don’t I just show you!
  24. 24. • AdventureWorks has made a business decision to start leveraging InfoPath for different types of data gathering and process management…• They would like to archive completed forms in a SharePoint 2010 Records Center Site as a searchable, read-only PDF…
  25. 25. SENDING INFOPATH FORMS TO A SHAREPOINT RECORDS CENTER
  26. 26. • Sent a generic InfoPath XML form to a Records Center, not so pretty…• Added some workflow and used Muhimbi PDF converter to convert submitted InfoPath Forms to PDF• Leveraged SharePoint Designer Workflow and Muhimbi Workflow Actions to send converted PDFs to a Records Center(For more information on Muhimbi, go towww.muhimbi.com)
  27. 27. • Some controls not supported on List forms… – External item picker – Template Parts• Managed metadata not supported at all…• Writing to a People Picker column not supported…• Sending completed forms to Records Center…
  28. 28. Tips & Tricks• Use Template Parts to create reusable templates to include branding, help, standard fields, rules, etc.• Use External Content Types to populate InfoPath Forms with LOB data…• Gather requirements and understand them, InfoPath is great, but it’s not the right tool for everything…• Don’t recreate the wheel!
  29. 29. Questions?Ryan Dennis, MCTS, MCITPSenior SharePoint Engineer @ ICCMicrosoft Virtual Technology Specialist (vTSP) www.SharePointRyan.com @SharePointRyan linkedin.com/in/ryandennis ryan@sharepointryan.com

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