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Methods to overcome the Microsoft .NET (X)HTML FORM nesting limitations

Methods to overcome the Microsoft .NET (X)HTML FORM nesting limitations

This article has been created in order to assist users or developers who may be attempting to use FORM tags within the main content of sites although are encountering issues due to the Microsoft .NET limitations around the nesting of FORM tags.

The requirement to overcome this limitation revolve around the fact that the Easysite CMS software is, to all intent and purposes made up of a Master Form (FORM tags) in it's own right. Every Easysite powered website begins with FORM tags not displayed within the HTML and not visible to the end user. 

This information is not always important to know, obvious or easy to understand for the everyday user although without this the Easysite CMS software would not be able to provide the level of function or flexibility required for such a vast software application. 

This article references potential solutions to allow separate none Easysite forms to be utilised regardless of the limitations present.

Install the Easysite Forms module

The perfect solution for creating and managing content such as information and access requests would be to utilise the Easysite Forms module. This module offers the ability to create and manage complex forms without the requirement for any technical knowledge that would be required for all other solutions. 

If this module is not already available within your Easysite installation, please contact your EIBS Account Manager who will be able to provide further information and solutions fully tailored to your requirements. 

Utilise the Easysite plug-in API to create a Form plugin element

The ideal solution for implementation forms created outside of Easysite is to utilise the power of the Easysite plug-in API to create an element to add the form in question to a page in Easysite. The API has a standard form wrapper available that a .NET developers can implement a solution for using Microsoft Visual Studio.

The benefits of using this solution is that once created a none technical user could add these forms to any Easysite pages using the standard element palette available against the 'Structure' or 'Edit Structure / Template' interfaces.

Please complete the developer training request form to receive details regarding development through the Easysite plug-in API. Alternatively, speak with your EIBS Account Manager to arrange for training or plugin elements to be created on your behalf.

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Easysite Plugin Palette

Implement JavaScript to create a 'Code Asset' containing a form

If creating an Easysite plugin element is not possible, the recommended solution would be to create an Easysite 'Asset' referencing JavaScript (through the API) in essence functioning the same as if created through the use of the Easysite plug-in API.

Whilst it's not possible to simply drop form tags into a 'Code Asset' directly, it's perfectly feasible and possible to utilise resources such as 'JQuery.Forms' to write out the form in JavaScript bypassing the limitations of nesting the FORM tags.

Note: that JavaScript is not always enabled on all browsers. You may need to consider this when working out an appropriate solution.

Please speak with your EIBS Account Manager if you wish to arrange consultancy to discuss this solution further or alternatively to arrange for the described functionality to be created on your behalf. 

Integrate Easysite styles to display FORM tags outside the Master Form

Another alternative solution to these limitations may be to display a 'Code Asset' containing FORM tags outside the Master Form. This in turn would mean nesting of FORM tags is not present and thus no issues would be apparent as the forms would both be Master Forms in there own right.

Please speak with your EIBS Account Manager if you wish to arrange consultancy to discuss this solution further or alternatively to arrange for the described functionality to be created on your behalf.          

Add the Easysite 'iFrame' element

This is the least favoured solution and could require the content being hosted on a domain (or subdomain) outside of your Easysite solution. 

Note: it is possible for separate form to be accessible from the present domain, however an Ignore Path will be required in order to prevent the request attempting to access a physical Easysite page.

In order to implement this solution, simply add the 'iFrame' element to your webpage and configure this with the domain and URL that the form content can be accessed through. The content will then be displayed within the iFrame although the physical FORM tags will not be present within the HTML and no nesting will be present.

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