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Convert Sharepoint List to Form Libary

    Question

  • We have migrated data from some legacy DB's into Sharepoint as list(s). We are finding that some of the sites would benefit from using Infopath Form Services.

    In order to get the most use out of Infopath Form services with the least amount of overhead in terms of coding or using data connections / CAML, it would be nice if somehow we could convert these 100 Sharepoint lists into Form Libraries that Infopath Form Services can automatically submit & retrieve data from virtually OOB.

    Now, I know how to make an Infopath form Send & Recieve data from a Sharepoint list & have done this, but to duplicate that process for 300 Infopath forms is not going to be cost-effective in terms of time spent doing this for each form. So my preference is to make this work OOB. 

    With that said, is there anyway to convert an existing Sharepoint List into a Form Library that Infopath can use OOB? Does Sharepoint have any kind of a webservice to do this? Can I generate the XML needed to encapsulate a Sharepoint List that an Infopath Form Library creates OOB?

     

     

    Wednesday, September 29, 2010 9:41 PM

Answers

  • No, there is not, because lists aren't document-based, so you'd have to create an actual form template for every single list.  Every template has to actually be designed and developed.

    However, if you went to 2010, you wouldn't have to change anything other than to convert the list form to InfoPath.

    BTW, form libraries don't create anything OOTB.  There isn't even a form to use when you create a form library.  You have to actual create one.


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    • Marked as answer by UberGeek77 Thursday, September 30, 2010 2:40 PM
    Thursday, September 30, 2010 1:25 AM

All replies

  • No, there is not, because lists aren't document-based, so you'd have to create an actual form template for every single list.  Every template has to actually be designed and developed.

    However, if you went to 2010, you wouldn't have to change anything other than to convert the list form to InfoPath.

    BTW, form libraries don't create anything OOTB.  There isn't even a form to use when you create a form library.  You have to actual create one.


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    • Marked as answer by UberGeek77 Thursday, September 30, 2010 2:40 PM
    Thursday, September 30, 2010 1:25 AM
  • When you say, "if we went to 2010," you mean Sharepoint 2010 and the latest version of ECAL or just Sharepoint?

    And are you saying it can convert the fields in an Edit Item page from a Sharepoint List to an Infopath form automatically?  Does it also encapsulate the existing list items into XML files the way a Form Library does in 2007?

     

     

    Thursday, September 30, 2010 2:45 PM
  • SharePoint 2010 Server Enterprise.  Enterprise is required, because list forms are browser forms (unfortunately).

    What you do is you take just about any list (a few are restricted like Event lists) and click "Customize Form" in the ribbon.  This automatically creates 3 new pages (new, edit, display) and a new InfoPath form template with custom views for each page.  The pages have an InfoPath Form Web Part for displaying the form in its relevant view (Display page shows the form in read-only mode with no buttons, etc).  The initial "design" is just generic like a list form, but it's all ready for you to design and add logic (secondary data connections, views, buttons, conditional formatting, etc).  The form is directly tied to the list and is NOT a separate entity like a form library.

    So, no, it does not generate XML files, because it's a list.  There is no separate file, and it's very cool (I much prefer it to form libraries now).  With your lists, you wouldn't have to do any migration or development or creation of form templates.  The lists could just be converted with the click of a button while maintaining the current schema.


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    Thursday, September 30, 2010 5:13 PM
  • So Clayton,

    I have created an InfoPath customized list.  Thinking I was safe, because my client had sworn up and down on a stack of bibles that they had their requirements set.  The key requirement I had asked them about was to make sure they did not need a dynamic table with a variable number of entires.  Of course they just changed their mind, so now I need to redo the InfoPath page in a form library.  Is there anyway to avoid redoing the page manually?  Is there some way I can convert the page from a customized InfoPath list page to an InfoPath form Library?

    Tuesday, May 31, 2011 7:57 PM
  • Marcel, they are completely separate template types - the data schema will be nothing like it was.  The only thing you can keep is the design.
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    Thursday, June 02, 2011 4:31 AM
  • If we use lists instead of form libraries, is there any OOB way to link directly to a list's "Add New Item" page like you can with a form library's (http://SharePoint/sites/Forms/_layouts/FormServer.aspx?XsnLocation=http://SharePoint/sites/Forms/MyFormTemplate/Forms/template.xsn&OpenIn=Browser)?  When I use the URL generated by the list's "Add New Item", it opens the form inside the framework of our site template rather than opening a free standing New Item form.  Thanks for your help!

    Monday, April 22, 2013 8:43 PM