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We have Sharepoint 2010 standard editions so we cannot use infopath. But we do have expertise in Visual Studio 2010 professional and we have two programmers with c# .NET expertise. I have following questions.

  1. Can we develop custom forms looks like infopath if yes then how? some step by step guide or link would be helpful.

  2. My forms are based on different sections filled by different users like the following

Section-1

Section-II

Section-III

Section-IV (To be filled by Information Technology)

Comments.

So my situation is when user will initiate the form and fill section-I the workflow will trigger and sends the form to users 2 which will fill section-II and then users 3 with Section-III and finally user 4 for Section-IV ...and only respective user can edit their sections (enable section as per user and as per workflow)

how to achieve this? again if any step by step guide or link where there is example of it would be helpful.

thanks

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+1 because of the interesting answers. This question could be improved by more detail. For example, you say you cannot use infopath because of your license. As Chris points out, this may not be true in all cases, so added detail would clarify why you believe it is true in your case. –  Tom Resing Jul 7 '11 at 16:11
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2 Answers 2

How I would do this:

Create a visual-webpart with different (update)panels. You could send an e-mail to the next person to notify them, including a url to this form but with parameters (querystring).

Example: http://www.myurl.com/Pages/test.aspx?person=JohnDoe&panel=1

In this example you could check if the logged in person is John Doe and if so, activate panel 1. But I suggest you encrypt this (for security reasons). You can also write to a custom list in sharepoint to save the results. Caution: set custom security on this list!

Also, I suggest using a feature. When activating, you can create the list and add the webpart. Then there are no manual actions needed unless activating/deactivating the feature.

Usefull links:

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+1 for useful links –  Tom Resing Jul 7 '11 at 16:09
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First, check the licensing with Microsoft. Workflow forms (Association/Initiation and Task forms) built with InfoPath are supported on Standard Edition. I have seen this confirmed in multiple locations. Some references suggest it only applies to SharePoint Designer workflows, but I believe this also applies to Visual Studio workflows.

http://blog.sharepointelearning.com/licensing-requirements-for-infopath-forms-on-sharepoint/

If you are still wary of using InfoPath, than you need to understand that InfoPath or custom ASPX forms interact with SharePoint workflows under the covers by reading/writing Xml on workflow properties. As long as you can serialize or build an Xml representation of your form, you can build custom UI.

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+1 for great licensing clarification and workflow details from custom ASPX forms. –  Tom Resing Jul 7 '11 at 16:08
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