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Microsoft recently announced that they will be "retiring" InfoPath:

In an effort to streamline our investments and deliver a more integrated Office forms user experience, we’re retiring InfoPath and investing in new forms technology across SharePoint, Access, and Word. This means that InfoPath 2013 is the last release of the desktop client, and InfoPath Forms Services in SharePoint Server 2013 is the last release of InfoPath Forms Services. The InfoPath Forms Services technology within Office 365 will be maintained and it will function until further notice.

Update on InfoPath and SharePoint Forms

However, some of the additional guidance given in the article seems contradictory to a total break from the product line:

What should I use to build and complete forms?

You should continue to use InfoPath technology.

Will there be a migration tool or process for the next generation of forms technology?

We’ll provide more details on migration scenarios and guidance in Q4 of CY 2014.

So what does everyone think about this? And how should this affect our guidance of clients on this matter?

  • 2
    is "I will organize a guided tour to its grave and then dance all the night long while drinking grog" a valid answer? – SPArchaeologist Feb 5 '14 at 9:00
  • 1
    I hate InfoPath too. So yes. Of course. Especially being so eloquently stated. – RJ Cuthbertson Feb 5 '14 at 15:26
  • I am split up between wanting to post that answer, provided with explicative picture or let the discussion stay serious and limit that to the comment above – SPArchaeologist Feb 5 '14 at 15:57
  • relevant: nikpatel.net/2014/03/08/… – Mike Mar 13 '14 at 22:10
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I'm a little miffed and I seem to be the minority. It does things like repeating sections very well and stores it all as XML. You can then do so many things with that XML. I love having Nintex available to run xslt againt it and generate awesome looking email notifications.

It also handles rules and show/hihding content well. It takes less time to create forms than to create it all in html/spd/vs and then wire up all the javascript to handle showing and hiding content as well as all the validation too.

  • Sure, if you know what you're doing. I work for an international company with 28000+ employees and out of all those employees I am 1 out of 8 (world wide, 1 out of 2 in EU region) who actually knows how to use InfoPath. It took me 2 weeks of intense training to learn my way around it. I for one are glad InfoPath goes away after SP2013. WebForms are 10x better in my opinion. – user2536 Feb 19 '14 at 9:46
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Since MS has said that they will support InfoPath for 10(!) more years there is no need for extreme action as of now.

Probably the support will be discontinued with the next on premise release, and hopefully by then MS has presented the new alternative to InfoPath (in my dreams, and probably only there, with great migration paths).

My guess is that we will see more of a web forms approach (like MVC) with a huge part of the logic and rendering done client side (JavaScript).

TL DR: For now, I see no reason to not carry on with business as usual. Microsoft says to take no actions, and they have yet to present their alternative :)

  • Maybe MS Frontpage? No, that's right - it became SharePoint Designer... – Benny Skogberg Feb 19 '14 at 6:15
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I've had the extreme pleasure of working with InfoPath and administrative forms. You know what I say? Good Riddance.

I'll give you a couple reasons why:

  1. Code-behind administrative forms are very tricky to migrate. Usually there are misreferences, and they need to be republished manually.
  2. Think about it, there can be a better forms integration technology that uses code behind, and since the CSOM is becoming the new standard, XPath and administrative forms doesn't make sense anymore.
  3. Using XPath is fun if you know what you are doing, but it's not realistic. Very steep learning curve.
  4. XML is getting trumped by JSON, I think they know that.
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We're actually planning using InfoPath in a new O365/SharePoint Online environment. This blog post will actually make us reconsider if InfoPath really is the solution for our customer. A product on death row is no fun to use even if it takes ten years for InfoPath to meet its maker...

  • It may well be supported for 10 years, but you can be sure it won't get much further development, if any. I wouldn't start any new projects using InfoPath at this point. – SPDoctor Feb 25 '14 at 11:53
  • @SPDoctor That's my idea as well. Especially on O365/SPO environment, which will auto-migrate to the next unsupported SharePoint environment. – Benny Skogberg Feb 25 '14 at 15:50
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Good riddance!

Infopath is like giving a hardcore designer a crayon and asking him to design a website.

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