Welcome to the Alfresco Forms Development Kit (FDK).
The Alfresco FDK was introduced in the 3.3 release, it provides support for administrators and developers who wish to configure, extend or customize forms in Spring Surf based applications, for example, Share.
Installing the AMP
The AMP (alfresco-fdk.amp) can be installed into the alfresco.war file using the normal techniques, either with the Module Management Tool or using the apply_amps script provided with the installer.
Installing the JAR
Presuming the Tomcat instance you are using has been configured to use the shared folder you can simply drop the JAR file (alfresco-fdk.jar) into <tomcat>/shared/lib.
You can of course drop the JAR file into the application's WEB-INF/lib folder too i.e. <tomcat>/webapps/<appname>/WEB-INF/lib but this will be removed when you update or upgrade your application so the technique above is recommended.
If you are installing the FDK into an older Spring Surf application that does not contain the required import statement the fdk-context.xml file can be manually added to your application using the following import:
If you've worked with forms in the 3.2 release you may recognize the Form Console as the old form-test page available in Share. It has now been renamed and moved to the FDK so it can be used in any Spring Surf based application.
The 'Form Console' page can be accessed via the following URL:
All the unit test form configurations are supplied in a file named 'fdk-unit-tests-config.xml', this can be a useful source of examples. The 'fdk-config-custom.xml' file mentioned above can be used to define more forms for further testing.
In it's current state the FDK provides a demonstration of what can be done with some of the features of the forms engine, all the samples previously distributed with Share have been moved into the FDK and made available in an easy to install package, this includes most the examples from Episode 35 of Tech Talk Live where the forms engine was discussed and demonstrated.
The following sections show a few screenshots and configuration of the example forms.
When an instance of the 'Gadget' (fdk:gagdet) type is created and it's metadata edited the following form is displayed.
In the 3.4 release a standard out-of-the-box EXIF aspect has been added. The 'fdk:exif' aspect provided by the FDK has therefore been deprecated.
When either the EXIF or dublin core aspects are applied to a cm:content node the FDK assigns their fields to a set and provides a custom set template. The dublin core fields are shown in 2 columns and the EXIF fields are displayed within an accordion control as shown in the screenshot below.
The FDK Unit Tests page provides a myriad of pre-configured examples to test the various features and capabilities of the forms engine. The NodeRef of an instance of an fdk:everything node has to be provided after which any link can be clicked to see the corresponding form. Each test uses the Form Console page with a form id from the fdk-unit-tests-config.xml file.
The FDK also provides an XML schema describing the XML vocabulary for form configuration. To access the schema you'll need to checkout the source code from SVN. You'll find the schema in the root/projects/fdk/utils folder.
The schema only represents the forms configuration options so you will have to have a separate config file for your forms configuration otherwise the schema will incorrectly report errors against other Alfresco config.