Archive for the ‘XFA Forms’ Category

When using the xfaForm or Document Form variable it is extremely easy to set and get data if your form has an associated schema. Here is a basic recipe for setting and getting data from within an XFA based form in a LiveCycle process.

LiveCycle Version: 8.2.1

Here is a completed example with LCA: setget1


  • One XFA Form
  • One Schema

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Generate an xml file that will represent your form data:
    <?xml version=”1.0″?>
    <name>Joe Smith</name>
  2. Generate schema based on the form data. There is a great little web utility that will do this for you here: Generate XML Schema
  3. Build a form based on the schema
    1. Create a new form in LiveCycle Designer
    2. In the Data View panel select New Data Connection
    3. Specify your schema and choose the option to embed
    4. Drag items from the Data View onto your form and save resulting file in the repository
  4. Specify the form you just created as the template for your xfaForm or DocumentForm variable. If you can see the schema when you select Schema Settings you successfully embedded the schema. You can also load an external schema here.
  5. Now you can XPath directly to the form fields using the SetValue activity within your processĀ and set or get data. If you want to pre-populate data before a form is presented you can use this technique within your render service.




Note: I strongly recommend using schema. However, if you are not using one, you can still XPath to items within a form using the // syntax e.g.




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The custom Render service:


Initiate task via Workspace:


Fill and submit form in Workspace:


LiveCycle Version: 8.2.1

Here is a completed example with LCA: displayreaderextendedformws


  • One xdp form template
  • One Reader Extensions Credential
  • One custom Render service

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Add the form to the repository
  2. Workspace enable the form
    1. Open the form (this will launch Designer)
    2. Insert Custom > Process Fields
  3. Create a variable in the main process
    1. Choose new variable of type xfaForm, mark as input
    2. Specify the XFA form template to use ‘basic.xdp’
  4. Create a custom version of the Render service that will apply usage rights to the form
    1. Create a new process
    2. Choose the option to ‘copy an existing process’
    3. Locate the proper Render operation to extend: Process Management > Render PDF Form ES Update 1
    4. Add the ‘Apply Usage Rights’ activity to the end of the Render process
  5. Configure the ‘Apply Usage Rights’ activity
    1. Determine the proper variable to use as the input and output by examining the existing Render service e.g. ‘outFormDoc’
    2. Define the rights you would like to apply e.g. Basic form fill-in
    3. Determine the credential alias by accessing the Administration UI: Settings > Trust Store Management > Local Credentials
    4. Save and Activate the customized Render service
  6. Configure the form variable to use the customized Render service
    1. Select the form variable and go to ‘Advanced Settings’
    2. Specify the customized Render service
    3. Re-configure input variables
    4. Save and Activate the main process
  7. Establish a Task Manager Endpoint
    1. Open administration UI in a web browser and log in
    2. Navigate to Services > Applications and Services > Service Management
    3. Locate the main process using the Filter options
    4. Add a new Task Manager Endpoint
    5. Configure the Task Manger Category
    6. Configure the Operation

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Description: By default XFA based forms are setup to submit XML (XDP data) when a user clicks the submit button. This is a quick and easy recipe for creating a submit button that will send the entire PDF form as an attachment to an email.


  • 1 PDF form created in Adobe LiveCycle Designer

Cooking Instructions:

  1. Open the Form in LiveCycle Designer
  2. Add a button object to the form
  3. Update the caption to something like ‘submit the form’ or ’email the form’
  4. Change the Control type of the button to Submit
  5. Click on the Submit tab and choose PDF for the ‘Submit as’ type
  6. Update the submit URL e.g. mailto:bla@bla.co
  7. Add usage rights to the file. Note: This step is required to get the get this functionality in Adobe Reader. Usage rights can be added using LiveCycle Reader Extensions (or) you can add usage rights in Acrobat 8/9 (Acrobat 8: advanced > Enable usage rights in Adobe Reader; Acrobat 9: advanced > Extend Features in Adobe Reader). Please note: if you use Acrobat to add usage rights to the form, there is a licensing restriction on the number of users and forms. The Acrobat feature is provided for low volume use. Please refer to the Acrobat product license for full details.

Customizing the subject: To specify the subject you can use the standard mailto sytax. e.g. mailto:bla@bla.com?subject=bla.pdf for the submit URL.

Here is a sample file: basicemailsubmit_readerenabled. This file was created in LiveCycle Designer and usage rights were applied in Acrobat Pro.

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