Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Creating our first SharePoint 2013 Hosted App - Image Slider (Part 2)

This is the second post in a series that discusses how to create an Image Slider using the SharePoint-hosted App Model.

  • Part 1 – Creating our first SharePoint 2013 Hosted App
  • Part 2 – Creating our first SharePoint 2013 Hosted App Part  (this post)
  • Part 3 – Creating a Settings Page for our SharePoint 2013 Hosted App Part (not published)

So far in this series, we have covered how to create an Image Slider using the SharePoint-hosted App Model, but it runs as a full-page app which isn't very useful for an Image Slider. In this post, we will cover how to convert the full-page app to a SharePoint App Part that can be added as a web part to any SharePoint page.

Let's start by opening up our Visual Studio project from the first post, and adding a new item to the project.

Select the Client Web Part (Host Web) template from the list of available items. The template is located under the Office/SharePoint header. Give your App Part a name... I called mine SliderAppPart. Yes, very creative, I know!

On the next screen, ensure that the option to Create a new app web page for the client web part context is checked. This will create a new page to use for our App Part, instead of using the Default.aspx page that we were working with in the previous post.

After clicking Finish, the new App Part page should be displayed. Add a reference to after the jquery reference.

Add references to our App.css and App.js files.

Insert the following HTML markup inside the body element on the page. This contains the div element that will hold the images for the image slider.

<div id="slider_container" style="position:relative; top: 0px; left: 0px; width: 600px; height: 300px;">

    <!-- Slides Container -->
    <div id="slides" u="slides" style="cursor: move; position: absolute; overflow: hidden; left: 0px; top: 0px; width: 600px; height: 300px">


Next, open the App Part settings by double-clicking on the App Part in the Solution Explorer. Give the App Part a Title and Description and set the DefaultWidth and DefaultHeight to appropriate values. I chose to use values that were 50 pixels larger than the Image Slider div width and height.

Now, open the App.js JavaScript file, and replace the text in the $(document).ready() function with the following code.

   if (typeof ExecuteOrDelayUntilScriptLoaded != 'function') {
        //Get the URI decoded SharePoint site url from the SPHostUrl parameter.
        var spHostUrl = decodeURIComponent(getQueryStringParameter('SPHostUrl'));

        //Build absolute path to the layouts root with the spHostUrl
        var layoutsRoot = spHostUrl + '/_layouts/15/';

        $.getScript(layoutsRoot + "SP.Runtime.js", function () {
            $.getScript(layoutsRoot + "SP.js", loadSharePointPictures);
    else {
        ExecuteOrDelayUntilScriptLoaded(loadSharePointPictures, 'sp.js');

This ensures that the ExecuteOrDelayUntilScriptLoaded function has been loaded, prior to calling it. The App Part page does not load all of the SharePoint JavaScript files that the Default.aspx page loaded. If we deployed the App Part without making this change, we would encounter the following error:

The last change we need to make is to the AppManifest.xml. Double-click the file to open it, and replace the Start Page with the URL to the SliderImages library. This will set the SliderImages library as the default page when the Application is run.

Compile and deploy the app by pressing F5. The SliderImages image library should now be displayed by default. Click the link back to your development site located in the top-left hand side of the screen.

Create a new page to add our App Part onto by clicking the Settings icon, and selecting Add a Page.

Give the page a name (I called mine Test) and click Create.

The new page should open in Edit Mode. Click the Insert tab in the ribbon menu, and select the Web Part icon.

Our Image Slider App Part should show up under the Apps category, with the Title that we named the App Part. Select the App Part and click Add to add it to the page.

The Image Slider App Part should appear on the page now, but the display will be blank because we haven't loaded any images yet. Click Save to save the page, and exit Edit Mode.

Click the title of the Slider App Part to navigate to the SliderImages image library and upload the slider images into the library.

Once the images have been uploaded, click the link back to your development site located in the top-left hand side of the screen. Navigate back to the page that we created earlier. You should now see your images loaded and the Slider should be working now!

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Creating our first SharePoint 2013 Hosted App - Image Slider

This is the first post in a series that discusses how to create an Image Slider using the SharePoint-hosted App Model.

As you may know, SharePoint 2013 introduced a new App Model, which changed the focus from custom server-side code to client-side development. In this series, I will cover how to create a Slider app using the SharePoint-Hosted App Model and the Jssor jQuery image slider. The sample app will load images from a picture library located in the application site and display them in a Slider web part that can be placed on any site. In this first post, we will cover how to create a Slider SharePoint App, and the next post will expand on that to convert the App into an App Part that can be added onto any page.

To get started, download the Jssor slider files.

Create a new App for SharePoint project in Visual Studio.

On the Specify the app for SharePoint settings screen, select SharePoint-hosted app and enter the URL for SharePoint site that will be used to test and debug the slider app. In this example, the site that I am using is based on the Developer Site template.

After clicking Finish, a default App for SharePoint is created for you.

Add the Jssor script to the project by right-clicking on the Scripts folder and selecting Add --> Existing Item...

Select the JavaScript file that we downloaded earlier, and add it to the project.

Open the Default.aspx page located in the Pages folder, if it is not already open.
Add a reference to the JavaScript file in the page head section.

Replace the Page Title text in the PlaceHolderPageTitleInTitleArea with the name of your Slider App.

Replace the text in the PlaceHolderMain ContentPlaceHolder with the following HTML markup:
<div id="slider_container" style="height: 300px; left: 0px; position: relative; top: 0px; width: 600px;">

        <!-- Slides Container -->
        <div id="slides" style="cursor: move; height: 300px; left: 0px; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 0px; width: 600px;" u="slides"> 




Now, open the App.js JavaScript file, located in the Scripts folder, and remove the existing functions, other than the $(document).ready() function.

Select the code in the $(document).ready() function, and replace it with the following code. This tells the Slider to start sliding images when the page is loaded.
options = { $AutoPlay: true };

Now, add a new SharePoint list called SliderImages to the project, based on the Picture Library list template. This library will hold the images that we use to display in the Slider.

After the Slider Images list is created, give it a description, and make a note of the List URL. We will need this later when we upload the images to be used by the slider. I removed the space in the List URL, so in this example, the List URL is Lists/SliderImages

Now, open the App.js JavaScript file, and add the following line to the top of the script.
var options = null;
var pictures = null;

Add the following code after the $(document).ready() function in the App.js JavaScript file. This script loads the images from the SliderImages library that we just created and inserts them into the slides div in the Default.aspx page. Once all the images are loaded, it calls the JssorSlider function to start the Image Slider.

ExecuteOrDelayUntilScriptLoaded(loadSharePointPictures, 'sp.js');

function loadSharePointPictures() {
    //fetch the list of items using the client object model
    var context = new SP.ClientContext.get_current();

    //get the current website
    var web = context.get_web();

    //get the pictures list
    var list = web.get_lists().getByTitle('Slider Images');

    //create the query to get all items
    var query = SP.CamlQuery.createAllItemsQuery();

    //get all items from the query
    pictures = list.getItems(query);

    //load the context
    context.load(pictures, 'Include(FileRef)');

    //execute the query in async mode
        Function.createDelegate(this, success),
        Function.createDelegate(this, failed));

function success(sender, args) {
    var pictureArray = new Array();
    var pictureCount = 0;

    var enumerator = pictures.getEnumerator();

    while (enumerator.moveNext()) {
        var currentItem = enumerator.get_current();
        var filename = currentItem.get_item('FileRef');
        pictureArray[pictureCount++] = filename;

    var newHtml = '';

    for (var i = 0; i < pictureArray.length; i++) {
        newHtml += '<div><img u="image" src="';
        newHtml += pictureArray[i];
        newHtml += '"/></div>';


    var slider = new $JssorSlider$('slider_container', options);


function failed(sender, args) {

You should be able to run the App now, although nothing will actually be displayed because we haven't uploaded any images yet. Press F5 to compile and deploy the app.

To upload images, you have to navigate manually to the SliderImages picture library that we created earlier. To do so, click in the address bar and highlight everything after the name of your Slider app.

Replace the highlighted text with the location of your SliderImages library. If you have been following along with this blog, it should be located at /Lists/SliderImages.

After you have navigated to your Slider Images library, you can upload some pictures into the library to be used by the slider.

Once you have some pictures loaded, click on the Site Icon, or the link for your Slider App, to return to the App home page. You should now see your images loaded and the Slider should be working now!

Now that we have a working slider, it still isn't very functional. In order for this slider to work, you have to actually navigate to the Slider App, which takes up the full screen, and you lose your SharePoint context, which isn't very useful. In the next blog post, we'll cover how to convert this SharePoint App into a SharePoint App Part that can be loaded onto any page.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Programatically Extract Attachments from InfoPath Forms


You have an InfoPath form stored in a SharePoint Form Library. You want to run a workflow on this InfoPath form and let the workflow extract the file attachments and upload them to a document library.

Use the SPFile object of the SPListItem object that the workflow is running on to access the file that represents the XML of the InfoPath form. Load the XML into an XmlDocument object for read/write access. Get the base64-encoded value of the File Attachment field and decode it. Extract the file name and file contents from the decoded string. Upload the results to a document library. Clear the File Attachment field to remove the attachments from the InfoPath form. Replace the original XML of the SPFile object with the modified XML of the XmlDocument object.


This article assumes that you have created an InfoPath form template that has a File Attachment field named Attachment, and published the InfoPath form template to a SharePoint Form Library. I also assume you have a variable workflowProperties bound to the workflow properties.

First we retrieve the SPFile associated with the item... this file is the InfoPath form. If the form doesn't exist, then we exit.
SPFile file = workflowProperties.Item.File;
if (file == null)
Next, we get the binary stream from the form and load it into an XPathDocument

// Get the binary stream of the file
Stream formStream = file.OpenBinaryStream();
// Load the stream into an XPathDocument object
XmlDocument ipForm = null;
Create a NameSpaceManager object and add the namespace of the form to it

XmlNamespaceManager ns = new XmlNamespaceManager(ipForm.NameTable);
ns.AddNamespace("my", "namespace_of_form");
Get the XML node containing the file attachment

XmlNode attachmentNode = ipForm.SelectSingleNode("/my:Attachment");
Decode the base64 encoded string into bytes

byte[] attachmentNodeBytes = Convert.FromBase64String(attachmentNode.InnerXml);
Position 20 contains a DWORD indicating the length of the filename buffer.
The filename is stored as Unicode so the length is multiplied by 2

int fnLength = attachmentNodeBytes[20] * 2;
byte[] fnBytes = new byte[fnLength];
The actual filename starts at position 24

for (int i = 0; i > fnLength; i++)
fnBytes[i] = attachmentNodeBytes[24 + i];
Convert the filename bytes to a string. The string terminates with '\0' so the actual filename is the original filename minus the last character

char[] charFileName = UnicodeEncoding.Unicode.GetChars(fnBytes);
string fileName = new string(charFileName);
fileName = fileName.Substring(0, fileName.Length - 1);
The file is located after the header, which is 24 bytes long (plus the length of the filename)

byte[] fileContents = new byte[attachmentNodeBytes.Length - (24 + fnLength)];
for (int i = 0; i < fileContents.Length; i++)
fileContents[i] = attachmentNodeBytes[24 + fnLength + i];
Open the document library

SPDocumentLibrary docLib = (SPDocumentLibrary)workflowProperties.Web.GetList(url_to_doc_library);
Get the root folder

SPFolder folder = docLib.RootFolder;
Get the files in the folder

SPFileCollection files = folder.Files;
Upload the file to the document library using the folder URL and filename we retrieved earlier

SPFile file = files.Add(folder.Url + "/" + fileName, fileContents);
Get the list item of the file we uploaded and set the title to the filename

SPListItem fileAdded = file.Item;
fileAdded["Title"] = fileName;
Save the list item

Remove the attachment from the InfoPath form. We do this by deleting the InnerXml and then adding the attribute xsi:nil=true

attachmentNode.InnerXml = string.Empty;
XmlNode nilAttribute = ipForm.CreateAttribute("xsi", "nil",;
nilAttribute.Value = "true";
Convert the XML document to bytes

attachmentNodeBytes = Encoding.UTF8.GetBytes(ipForm.OuterXml);
Close the file stream

Save the bytes of the XML document as the contents of the SPFile object that represents the InfoPath form

Save the changes made to the SPFile object

That's it! Your workflow should now be able to extract the attached document and upload it to a document library.


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