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In a InfoPath 2007 form, the Person/Group Picker control is often used to select person or group from a SharePoint Site and validate those users against a directory provider.

What happen to the form Person/Group Picker field if the person or group is deleted from the directory provider / SharePoint Site?

Example:
Suppose a form's Person/Group picker field contain a Person name - assuming 'Wendy'. However, Wendy resign from the company and thus the Site Administrator remove her name from the SharePoint Site and the Directory Provider. Will the form's Person/Group picker field still contain 'Wendy'?

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Simple answer is Yes. Forms Person picker will still hold 'Wendy' but you will no longer be able to pick 'Wendy'. Username is stored in InfoPath xml file and that is why it is still there.

However I noticed some 'strange' things going on with Person picker in Infopath (I have done some tests with 2010 most likely it applies on 2007 even though 2010 people picker control is improved). After deletion of 'Wendy' (from Site Collection users) if you are using Browse button and Select People dialog you will be unable to find her. But if you type 'Wendy' in text box and click Check names 'Wendy' will be resolved.

General note:

Removing people from Site Collections IMO is not good practice. By default if you remove someone from Directory Provider this person will no longer be able to authenticate on your Site Collection and this is enough. Still this person user info resides on Site Collection because there can be tons of items in need for this specific user info eg. Author and Editor fields. By deleting user info from site collection you will loose this valuable information.

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  • Actually, I wanted the 'Wendy' to still be inside the form even if she is deleted from the Site Collections or/and Directory Provider. By the way, if suppose someone go and edit the Person picker field and change to another person, will 'Wendy' be recorded into the version history if versioning is enable for the form? Sep 13, 2011 at 8:29
  • Out of the head: it will be recorded because is is not standard SP user field and even if you are promoting this field to SP list it will be 'Single line of text' type. Sep 13, 2011 at 8:37
  • Just wanted to make sure that version history can record the Person picker field because there is one time that I cannot restore a particular version due to similar scenario. Anyway, your answer are good as you share some of the tests result with the community. The green tick is awarded to you. Sep 13, 2011 at 9:00
  • What? Just accepted without upvote? :) Green tick can be also easily removed if better answer comes along. Too bad I don't have 2007 installed to make it 'a real test'. Sep 13, 2011 at 9:54

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