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Browser-enabled form templates cannot be previewed in the browser To see a form rendered in the Web browser, publish the form to a server running Forms Services and bring up the form in the browser
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9: Saving and Publishing
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Figure 922: Configuring preview settings
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With Sample Data So far, we ve always previewed forms with the default form data This means that when you preview, you re seeing exactly what your users will see when they create a new, blank form But isn t it more interesting when the form has some real-world data Since InfoPath forms can dynamically change size and shape as your users insert rows and enter large amounts of data, you ll want to check that your form layout still looks reasonable Another effect of testing with nondefault form data is that your form may behave differently if you have rules, roles, conditional formatting, data validation, or other data-centric InfoPath features Therefore, it s imperative that you test your form well throughout its design so your users don t call you later to complain! To specify a sample data le to use when previewing your form, visit the Preview category on the Form Options dialog (Figure 922) You can use the Browse button or type any path (including network and HTTP-based
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Previewing Form Template s
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locations) in the File location text box The text box does not validate that the le exists, so if you manually enter a path, make sure you don t mistype it
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Preview Options Are Persisted
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After clicking OK in the Preview category of the Form Options dialog, your preview settings will always apply for the life of the form template The settings are saved in the form de nition (xsf) le Publishing removes this persisted information from the published version of the form template
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Are you at a loss for how to create a sample data le Easy! Just preview your form, ll it out as you wish, and then save it (We ll talk about saving during preview soon) Recall the saved le location when you set the sample data File location in preview settings If you re using a sample data le that contains sensitive information, or you just don t want others to know what le you re using for testing your form, you have no need to worry Publishing your form removes the sample data le path from the form de nition le
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With User Roles Without giving away too much, we ll gently introduce how to use a role when previewing your form (For a full discussion on the de nition of a role as well as how and when to use one, see 13) The general purpose of a role is to customize the form- lling experience As you ll see in a moment with an example, using roles in your form can be a critical part of its design But there s no good way to simulate a person with a speci c role lling out your form You could ask a person with that role to help you test your form But that s not a realistic expectation if you re dealing with multiple roles If you re designing a form for a customer, it s probably not even possible (nor is it professional!) to ask for such help
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User roles are not supported in browser-enabled form templates
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9: Saving and Publishing
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Say, for example, that you re designing a form that shows a grocery market s entire inventory Your form has two views: one for checkers (a read-only list of inventory) and one for managers (a read-write version) You set up two roles that model those two types of users Checkers are not allowed to modify inventory, so they should not be given access to the managers view Let s assume that you ve set up your form appropriately to restrict the checkers access to the managers view How do you know everything in your form works as expected Preview with a role! By default, the Preview as drop-down on the preview options page (refer back to Figure 922) is disabled This means that when you preview the form, it will run with no speci c role This is the default preview behavior unless you set a role The Preview as drop-down is enabled when you de ne one or more user roles for the form template (See 13 to learn how to add user roles) When you preview with a role that isn t the default role, the form role will be explicitly set to the selected role
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