Infopath, Sharepoint 2010 Form Library question

Posted on 2013-10-23
Last Modified: 2013-10-25
i created a form using infopath and published it to my site successfully.  After publishing this to a form library I created during the publishing wizard the form title shows in the left  side menu of the sharepoint site.  When I hit that link the only thing I see is this note and the add button.  

There are no items to show in this view of the "UDCFormsLibrary" document library. To add a new item, click "New" or "Upload".

When i select the add button the form comes up and it's working correctly.  Why do I not see a list of forms that can be selected and why does my form not show up on this as already published with a name in the list.  Also I can't add it from my hard drive because it opens the one form when I select add. It does the same thing if I create the form library on the sharpoint site first then try to publish the form to that library.
Question by:kdschool
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LVL 28

Expert Comment

ID: 39595054
Not exactly sure what you are asking.

There are a couple things you may not understand. The InfoPath Template, which you design, is essentially a CAB file that renders data the way you want it to. It can create XML data files, update a SharePoint list, Edit data in a database, be emailed, etc.

When you publish the template, you package it and put it in a place where others can access it.
Sounds like you have done this to a SharePoint Form Library and yes the Add button is the default way to open the template, since the default is that you would also submit XML data files to the library. So Add files. You can also create a link directly to the form for people to make a more intuitive link for them.

In the template design you have data connection that receive and pull in data and also submit or push data. You would want to create at least one submit data connection to save the data that the user manipulates.

Almost all my forms work with databases, typically via webservices, so there is rarely any saving of the XML of the form and the template is just UI.  But more traditional sharepoint is to save files.

Example would be vacation requests. You build a form where users select dates, and reasons, you maybe connect to HR data to see their balance, when they click a submit button it saves the XML data file to the library. Then someone from HR has an alert on that library which emails them a new form has been Added.  They open that submitted file, it opens up in your form again, and then they mark it approved or whatever and it sends out an email and maybe saves to a different library via a different submit for archiving.

Author Comment

ID: 39600606
I created the form that receives data through a soap connection for some fields and some other fields I need the user to enter data.  So you are saying the form is just the interface part of this.  In my case it's using a soap connection to pull data into the form and you are saying I need a back end to collect the data.  If I add a submit button how would I tell that to put the data that the soap connection is pulling in and the data the user enters into a xml file?  Is there a tutorial or something that would show me how to do this?
LVL 28

Expert Comment

ID: 39600663
I guess the question is what you want to do with the information after the user enters it and adds it to what was pulled in via the web service? Who needs it? How are they going to retrieve it?

could submit it back via another web service to a database.
save the XML in a file in a SP library?
to do that you would create a submit connection to the library.
then someone could open it up in InfoPath again or whatever.

just need to understand who will be the next consumer of the data. You can have the form serve their needs with a second view, you can have some workflow, or feed some other system.
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Author Comment

ID: 39600675
I would need to download that to a excel or access database for someone else to do analysis on. Is that possible.
LVL 28

Accepted Solution

clayfox earned 500 total points
ID: 39600698
Certainly would be best to save the data to SQL for reporting.
next best would be to submit form XML to library in SP, promote the fields you want so that they show in the library.  Then you can create a special view for excel if needed. Either way you can connect Excel directly to the library or export.

another option is to make a second form for the analyst, which queries the contents of the library the first dorm saves to and aggregates it. They could do the analysis in the form or InfoPath has an export to Excel as well.

Author Comment

ID: 39600732
So if I am using infopath how do I connect the form to an xml library?  I dont have access to sql database.

Author Comment

ID: 39600747
I found an online course at Microsoft. You got me there.  I need to build an xml form and then I can export to excel.  It is not going to be a huge data store so that will work well for this. Thank you.
LVL 28

Expert Comment

ID: 39600751
Go to data and add a data connection

select submit and then sharepoint

walk through the wizard to browse to the site, probably the on you published to.

decide on a naming scheme for the files , typically a concat of doe unique elements, maybe add time or date.

and that is it, then add a button to the end that fires that submit action if the data validates

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