Smart Forms Form Printing in the Internet Age
Smart Forms was introduced in SAP Basis Release 4.6C as the tool for creating and maintaining forms within SAP solutions, such as mySAP CRM, mySAP SCM, mySAP SRM, and mySAP Healthcare, and is already used by numerous customers. Smart Forms provides an easy-to-use graphical user interface which enables you to carry out the crucial tasks of creating and adjusting forms without any programming skills.
Key Benefits of Smart Forms
- Smart Forms allows you to reduce considerably the implementation costs of SAP solutions since forms can be adjusted in minimum time.
- The process of designing the form and creating the form logic is completely supported by the Form Builder with integrated graphical user interfaces for page design, table design and text. Furthermore, the Form Builder provides a tree structure to navigate through your form description and to determine the main processing order. Of course, drag-and-drop as well as copy-and-paste functions are also included.
- Using your form description maintained in the Form Builder, Smart Forms generates a function module that encapsulates layout, content and form logic. So you do not need a group of function modules to print a form, but only one.
- In addition to the tool itself, SAP delivers a set of forms for central business processes, including forms in SAP Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and the SAP R/3 Sales and Distribution (SD), Financial Accounting (FI), and Human Resources (HR) application components.
Building Web Forms Using Smart Forms
As of SAP Web Application Server 6.10, Smart Forms can generate HTML based on XML output. This allows the integration of interactive Web Forms in Web applications.
- The layout of a Web Form corresponds to the printed version. Printed forms that are already used in a business process are instantly recognized.
- Existing Smart Forms used for printing can be reused for Web applications by turning a switch. You can add HTML input elements to your Smart Form without showing them in your printed version.
- For an evaluation of user entries on a Web Form, it needs to be integrated in some kind of Web application infrastructure. SAP recommends that you use Business Server Pages to do so.
SAP Smart Forms
Frequently Asked Questions with Answers
1. Which Basis Release do I need to use SAP Smart Forms?
SAP Smart Forms is available as of R/3 Basis Release 4.6C. It is not possible to use it in Basis Releases before 4.6C since it uses SAP kernel technologies which do not exist in earlier releases. Even if you deploy the appropriate kernel in a, say, 4.6B system it is definitely not possible to use Smart Forms because its tools were still under development by that time.
Back to Top
2. I have heard that Smart Forms replaces SAPscript. What does "replace" mean?
It does not mean that SAPscript is removed from the Basis shipment. Even as of Basis Release 4.6C, SAPscript remains part of the SAP standard and there are no plans to remove it. In fact, some transactions of SAPscript are reused by SAP Smart Forms (for example, font or graphic maintenance). Since Smart Forms is currently, and will continue to be, the tool for form maintenance for mySAP.com solutions, our further development efforts will focus on Smart Forms, not on SAPscript (of course, we will still support the existing functionality of SAPscript as far as maintenance contracts are concerned). The term "replace" mirrors the hope that you will like Smart Forms as many customers already do and use it instead of SAPscript.
Back to Top
3. Is it still possible to use SAPscript instead of SAP Smart Forms?
Yes. We would encourage you to use SAP Smart Forms especially for new forms but both products can be used in parallel.
Back to Top
4. Where can I find documentation on Smart Forms?
If you are already working with Basis Release 4.6C or higher, just call transaction SMARTFORMS and choose menu Help->Application Help to jump directly to the Smart Forms online documentation in the SAP Library. You can also access this documentation in the SAP Help Portal. Call the online documentation for your release using the left navigation frame and open the SAP Library. The SAP Smart Forms online documentation can be found by choosing:
Basis components (as of SAP Web AS 6.10: SAP Web Application Server)
-> Basis Services / Communication Interfaces (BC-SRV)
-> SAP Smart Forms (BC-SRV-SSF)
Alternatively, have a look at the presentations in our media library.
Back to Top
5. Where can I find documentation Web Forms?
In the section Web Forms for Internet Applications of the Smart Forms online documentation as of SAP Web Application Server 6.10 (see last question). (See also question What is XSF? below).
6. Is there a book on Smart Forms?
Yes, you can purchase a german book on Smart Forms at Galileo Press. There is more Information available on this book.
7. Does SAP offer training on Smart Forms?
Yes, the training id and title is: BC470 - Form Printing Using SAP Smart Forms. See our On-line Training Event Catalog.
8. Is it possible to migrate a SAPscript form to a Smart Form?
Smart Forms provides a migration tool for this purpose which migrates layout and texts of a SAPscript form to a Smart Form. It does not migrate SAPscript form logic of the print program. Using Smart Forms, this logic is described by the tree structure of the Form Builder. The effort involved in migrating it depends on the complexity of the print program. See also the section Migrating SAPscript forms of the Smart Forms online documentation.
9. Do we have to migrate all SAPscript forms to Smart Forms?
There is no point in migrating all SAPscript forms already in use. Since SAPscript can still be used and will be available in the future, there is no need to. If you plan to migrate a SAPscript form, it is recommended that you check whether benefit is worth the effort involved.
10. How can I check if there are already standard smart forms for my application? What can I do if this is not the case?
SAP Note 430621 gives an overview of existing standard smart forms delivered by SAP applications. Additionally, SAP Labs offers preconfigured Smart Forms that are especially interesting for US customers. SAP Note 412293 provides a procedure if your application has not delivered a standard smart form.
11. What is XSF?
SAPscript offered a Raw Data Interface (BC-RDI) to allow the use of 3rd party printing tools, that is, to pass form content (without layout information) from R/3 to an external product. Smart Forms provides a data stream called XML for Smart Forms (XSF) for this purpose. As RDI, XSF does not contain any layout information about a Smart Form.
As part of the SAP Partner Program, you can become a certified partner for the XSF interface (BC-XSF). See SAP Integration Scenarios / Interfaces for information about all certifiable SAP interfaces. For information about BC-XSF choose mySAP Technology: Background Processing and Output Management.
Smart Forms XSF output is also the precondition generating HTML by using an XSLT program. This program uses layout information from your form (for example, used fonts, page and window sizes) and the given XML tags of XSF to generate HTML.
You must be Loged in to download file