With the release for WFFM 2.5 for Sitecore 7.5; SQL server is no longer supported (see release notes) as each time a form is submitted it automatically saves the form data in the xDB (MongoDB) and associates it with the current contact (used to be called visitor).
I believe MongoDB is a much better choice than SQL for storing non-structured data that is generated by WFFM and in addition it can also be used to tailor the experience to the current contact (visitor) i.e. don’t show them the form if they have already filled it out, etc.
Unfortunately I have a number of customers that want to upgrade to Sitecore 7.5, but due to a number of business and operational reasons are not ready to migrate MongoDB. Therefore they wish to continue storing their form data in the existing SQL database.
I decided to create a simple SQL provider for WFFM 2.5, that would allow customers to continue saving/retrieving data frm the existing SQL database.
The shared source module WEB FORMS FOR MARKETERS 2.5 – SQL PROVIDER (SAVETODATABASE) is available at Sitecore’s marketplace and the source code is available at GitHub.
This initial version is very simple and provides the following functionality:
- Save data to a WFFM SQL database (SaveToDatabase Action).
- Retrieve all submitted data for a given form.
- Download the data as a CSV file (see separate blog post)
- Specify a date range to be exported (see article)
- Define the CSV Delimiter (see article)
It was my intention to port the forms report viewer from a previous version, but the architecture has changed considerably to accommodate xDB and it would have required me to re-code and override a lot of classes. In addition there were a number of UI control libraries that the forms report viewer relies upon which are no longer used/bundled with Sitecore 7.5.
Therefore I intended to implement the ability to down load the data for a given form as an CSV file. So the data can be analysed and sorted using Excel, which in my experience is how the majority of customers used WFFM data.
Install the WFFM.SQLServer.SaveToDatabase-1.4.zip package, note you prompted that the Save to database item already exists, select overwrite and aply, see below
Ensure the WFM.ConnectionString settingin /app_config/include/Sitecore.Forms.config is set to the name of the connection string for the WFFM SQL database i.e.
<setting name="WFM.ConnectionString" value="wfm" />
where the “wfm” connection is defined as follows:
<add name="wfm" connectionString="user id=[USER ID];password=[password];Data Source=[Server];Database=[WFM DATABASE];Connect Timeout=30" />
How To Save Data
Like previous version of WFFM you use the “Save To Database” action to save the submitted form data to the SQL database. The SaveToDatabase action is still /sitecore/system/Modules/Web Forms for Marketers/Settings/Actions/Save Actions/Save to Database. In fact it is the same item from previous versions, so all existing forms that use the SaveToDatabase action will continue to work without making any changes.
The only change is that class is WFFM.SQLServer.SaveToDatabase.Infrastructure.Actions.SaveToDatabase, from the WFFM.SQLServer.SaveToDatabase assembly.
Retrieve data for a given Form
To Insert new form data and retrieve data there is a FormReposiotry class which has a Get function to retrieve a list of form data for a given form id, seee below
public IEnumerable<IForm> Get(ID formId)
I have added a button to download data as CSV see this article.
And it is now possible to specify a date range to export and the delimiter used to separate the columns in the CSV file (see article)