InfoPath Forms Services Overview
Published: May 2010
InfoPath Forms Services, as part of Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010, provides a Web browser experience for filling out InfoPath forms. When deployed to a server running InfoPath Forms Services, forms based on browser-compatible form templates (.xsn) can be opened in a Web browser from computers that do not have InfoPath 2010 installed, but they will open in InfoPath 2010 when it is installed. Additionally, because the same form can be used in the browser or in the InfoPath editor, the form template design and management process is greatly simplified. The InfoPath Forms Services technology is built as a feature on the Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 platform.
A browser-compatible form template (.xsn) created in the InfoPath 2010 design mode user interface is rendered by the XmlFormView control as a browser-editable form that runs on SharePoint Server 2010. A browser-compatible form template with custom business logic written in managed code against members of the Microsoft.Office.InfoPath namespace must be deployed by an administrator and managed through a global list of form templates that is accessed from the SharePoint Server 2010Central Administration site. To display and work with this list, open the Central Administration site, click General Applications Settings, and then click Manage form templates under InfoPath Forms Services.
InfoPath Forms Services requires a server capable of running SharePoint Server 2010, and a license to access the form publishing and rendering functionality. Here are some points to quickly familiarize you with the capabilities of InfoPath Forms Services:
There is a subset of InfoPath 2010 features that do not work in the browser. For more information, see the Design-Once Feature Compatibility topic.
Designing form templates with custom code, or those without custom code but needing Full trust, requires Administrator deployment. While Domain trust form templates without code can be directly published and are immediately available on a SharePoint site, form templates with custom code require additional steps in order to work as browser-enabled forms. For more information about deploying a form template with code, see How to: Deploy Form Templates That Contain Form Code That Requires Full Trust.
Forms work on a variety of Web browsers on multiple platforms.
Start with the Developing and Deploying Form Templates for InfoPath Forms Services topic. After you have an InfoPath form template working in the browser, you may want to create one that has custom code. To learn more about deploying a form template with code, see the How to: Deploy Form Templates That Contain Form Code That Requires Full Trust topic.
To create a custom Web Part page that can host an InfoPath form in the InfoPath Form Web Part, see Working with the InfoPath Form Web Part
To create a custom Web page that can host an InfoPath form, see Authoring Custom Web Pages That Contain the XmlFormView Control.
To migrate InfoPath 2003 form templates for use with InfoPath Forms Services, see Migrating an InfoPath 2003 Managed Code Form Template.
For a list of step-by-step topics covering a variety of scenarios, see How Do I...in InfoPath Forms Services.
InfoPath Forms Services provides an object model that contains three namespaces:
The classes and members of the Microsoft.Office.InfoPath.Server.Administration namespace enable developers to automate form template administration from code running on the server.
The Microsoft.Office.InfoPath.Server.Controls namespace contains the XmlFormView class and its associated classes that provide an ASP.NET control used for rendering a browser-compatible form template in a custom Web page on the server.
The classes and members of the Microsoft.Office.InfoPath.Server.Controls.WebUI namespace implement and support the InfoPath Form Web Part.