How to use advanced syntax with the Formotus Now app

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Formotus Now is an app that lets anyone open a form by clicking on a link, without requiring any user credentials.

Basic Usage: Blank New Form

With the Formotus Now app installed, you can click on this link to open our example Safety Inspection form:

Safety Inspection

The link behind it looks like this:

https://secure.formotus.com/redirect.aspx?Run=Now&action=new&app=Safety%20Inspection&id=2bVmp2ZmrxGsdubi

That kind of link, which opens a new blank draft of the form, is provided to you in the Formotus portal for each form, accessible from the Forms screen. For basic usage, all you need to do is supply that link to the users you want to click it.

Advanced Usage: Open an Existing Instance

When a form is filled and submitted it becomes an XML file. When submitted to SharePoint it becomes an item in a SharePoint library. When submitted by email it becomes an attachment to the email, which might then be shared on a site such as Dropbox.

Any existing instance (XML file) that is available on the web (e.g. Dropbox, etc.) can be re-opened in Formotus Now by modifying the link provided by the cloud console with two changes:

  1. Change "action=new" to "action=open"
  2. Append "&url=[form location]" to the link

For example, if the Safety Inspection form above submitted to a SharePoint library, you could open it from there with a link formed like this:

https://secure.formotus.com/redirect.aspx?Run=Now&action=open&app=Safety%20Inspection&id=2bVmp2ZmrxGsdub&url=example.sharepoint.com/inspections/inspection6789.xml

Note: It's possible in SharePoint to create a column that contains the Formotus Now link to open each item in the library, allowing anyone with access to the SharePoint library to open the instance.

Advanced Usage: Populate Field Values

When you open a new or existing form instance in Formotus Now you can specify values to fill the fields using URL parameters. The syntax is:

https://secure.formotus.com/redirect.aspx?Run=Now&action=new&app=<Form Name>&<XPathField>=<value>

Note that the field must be identified using XPATH syntax, which is case sensitive.

For example, you could email someone a link to the Safety Inspection above with instructions to fill in the address of the inspection site with a link formed like this:

https://secure.formotus.com/redirect.aspx?Run=Now&action=new&app=Safety%20Inspection&id=2bVmp2ZmrxGsdub&/my:myFields/my:address=123%20Main%20Street&/my:myFields/my:city=redmond

Further Information

See the PDF file attached to this article for further details on the Formotus Now app syntax.

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