- make non-string data types such as xs:date and xs:decimal truly optional in InfoPath
- submit data to the web service by modifing the XML data in OnSubmitRequest to circumvent the missing support for nillable in .NET 1.x ASP.NET web services
The first issue is caused by the fact that ASP.NET 1.x web service by design do not support nillable elements in the web service parameters. Check the <wsdl:types> element of any ASMX WSDL, and you will not find any nillable="true" elements even if your data XSD contains such elements. The reason for this is the lack of support for NULL in .NET 1.x value types. ASP.NET 2.0 web services will support nillable="true".
After modifying the underlying XSD schemas of your InfoPath as outlined in my previous post to manually re-introduce the nillable="true" attributes, the fields can be left empty in your form. But you will not be able to sumbit the form to the web service. The SOAP request will fail like this:
The SOAP response indicates that an error occurred:
Server was unable to read request. --> There is an error in XML document (47, 104). --> Input string was not in a correct format.
This is caused by this kind of element in the submitted XML:
<s1:Amount xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance" xsi:nil="true"></s1:Amount>
The web service is not able to deserialize this element into a value type due to the lack of support for nillable. Thus, the XML data must be modified before submitting the data to the web service.
InfoPath allows you to use the OnSubmitRequest event to write your own script for submitting the forms data. This event is only available by using Tools-Submitting Forms and selecting "Custom submit using form code" in the 'Submit to' dropdown. Check the 'Edit Form Code' checkbox and click OK to add an event handler for OnSubmitRequest.
This example shows how to look for all instances of a specific element that is NULL, remove the nil attribute and set a dummy value, and finally submitting the form using code:
var submitDataSource = "Main submit";
//get a collection of
var nodeList = XDocument.DOM.selectNodes("/dfs:myFields/dfs:dataFields//s1:Amount[@xsi:nil='true']");
//iterate the list and
for(var i=0; i < nodeList.length; i++)
//put zero into the element
// The xsi:nil needs to be removed before we set the value.
// Setting the value will mark the document as dirty.
xmlNode.text = -1; //biz logic will interpret this as NULL
//call the Submit method of the
eventObj.ReturnStatus = true;
XDocument.UI.Alert("Failed while sending the request.\r\n" + ex.number + " - " + ex.description);
eventObj.ReturnStatus = false;