SharePoint Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for SharePoint enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

We have a need for users to fill out an electronic form. I then want this data to be available in a SharePoint list for tracking purposes. SharePoint is in a hosted environment where I do not have access to the server. I only have Site Collection rights.

90% of the users currently do not have access to the SharePoint environment, so InfoPath doesn't look to be a viable option.

Was going to attempt to use a PDF to send data to SharePoint, but I cannot use an event handler because it needs to be placed on the server.

I would like to take a filled out PDF and place it in a document library, where it will trigger a workflow that would extract the data and put it into a list. Is this possible? Or another solution?

share|improve this question
So this form currently resides elsewhere and you want to be able to get that data into Sharepoint to be able to run workflows? How and where is the data currently stored? – Eric Alexander Apr 15 '11 at 20:13
Currently the data is not stored anywhere. I want anonymous users to be able to fill out the form, hit submit, and would like it to go directly into SharePoint. That would be the best way. Alternative is to have the data (or entire document) sent to an e-mail. Then manually upload the document. Workflow then is triggered which extracts the data and put it into a list. Any other options are also on the table, whatever people can come up with. – Brian Hayes Apr 18 '11 at 18:43

Have you considered email enabled libraries? Since 90% of your users do not have access, you should consider that to get the information or form into SharePoint. If you use InfoPath, you could possibly still do this with an email distributed form, then the completed form would be an attachment and could be emailed into the library.

share|improve this answer
I thought of the email enabled libraries as well, but we currently don't use InfoPath for the organization. Correct me if I'm wrong, we would require InfoPath for every user who would fill out the form who doesn't have access to SharePoint? Is there any other options for InfoPath? Because we would like to use that as our E-Form solution, but without anonymous / partner access for SharePoint, I don't see that as an option. – Brian Hayes Apr 18 '11 at 18:39
I though of something else as well, our contractors who are currently working on the POC said that the email enabled libraries are not the easiest to configure? – Brian Hayes Apr 18 '11 at 18:48
If you have the Enterprise version of SharePoint, no, you do not need InfoPath for all users, as you could simply use browser based forms and publish them traditionally. However, if you do not, you will need the InfoPath Form Filler for all users in your organization. – Lori Apr 18 '11 at 18:48
Configuring email enabled libraries is not that difficult. You need only set up the incoming email for the server farm. To do this you'll have to set up the server as an SMTP server, which requires some configuration. It's not difficult. See here: – Lori Apr 18 '11 at 18:50
Thanks Lori for the link, since it is a hosted solution I don't think I can configure it this way currently. Working out the details with the hoster though to change some of the configuration settings and I will attempt to bring this to the table. – Brian Hayes Apr 18 '11 at 20:17

You can use SharePoint Web Services to post data to the SharePoint list using a trusted account from some other application (like a WPF application, or remote web application). The end user would not need to know the account being used to post the data to SharePoint, or have direct access themselves. The desktop client however would need to be able to store the credentials used to connect to the SharePoint Web Services securely.

share|improve this answer
I was also thinking of a WPF app for this, but I'm not a developer (going to school for it though!) and just trying to figure out the easiest solution for the next 9 months until everyone has access. I might ask one of our .NET devs how hard would this be, and if they could setup a template, I probably could modify it. Thanks for the info. – Brian Hayes Apr 18 '11 at 18:42

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.