©1998 by James Carr
E-Forms EZ is a Windows EXE (executable) designed to be run on a web server. It will process the contents of a form to send customized e-mail to whomever you choose. You will be able to format the message any way you want including HTML! E-Forms EZ will automatically insert the values from your form wherever you choose in the message body. E-Forms EZ will also show a customized response page to the caller after the message has been sent. E-Forms EZ can also save the results of a form submission to a file.
You must install e-forms.exe on your web server in the directory that is set up to execute scripts (usually /cgi-bin or /scripts on most installations). You may have to use FTP to move the file to your web server. If you are using FrontPage, please read about how to set up your FrontPage webs for use with E-Forms EZ.
Note: The web server must be running on a Windows based computer. It will not run on Unix (no Unix version is planned).
There are three basic elements required to use E-Forms EZ: The form the user fills out (Feedback Form), the page he sees after the mail is sent (Response Page), and the body of the message that will be sent (Message Text).
Optional elements include:
Required Fields - forcing the user to fill out certain required fields. If those fields are missing the Info Missing Page will be displayed.
Receipt Message: sending of a secondary Receipt Message back to the user after the primary message has been sent.
Saving Results: saving the results of a form submission to a file on disk.
Default Settings: saving default settings in e-forms.ini can speed the creation of new forms.
This is the HTML form that the user will fill out. On this form either in visible or hidden input fields you must have several key fields and a Submit button. There are other fields that can be used but are optional. The values of the fields here determine how the message will be sent and what page the user will see after the message has been sent. See List of Fields for details on all the fields. Open ez-demo.htm for an example.
This is the HTML page which will be displayed to the caller after he clicks Submit and the message is sent. You can insert macros on this page to represent the values of fields defined by your Feedback Form. Open ez-response_page.htm for an example.
This is the text file which contains the message to be sent by E-Forms EZ. You can insert macros in this file to represent values of fields defined by your Feedback Form. If you do not specify a name for this file, the message will be created dynamically with one field listed per line. Open ez-message_text.txt for an example..
If one of the following fields is blank when the form is submitted: mail_to, smtp_server, smtp_port or any field you create with _req as the last four characters of the field name - the Info Missing Page is shown to the user.You can require that the user fill out certain fields you create on your form by adding _req to the field name. You can insert macros in this file to represent values of fields in your form. Open ez-info_missing_page.htm for an example.
Error Page (optional)
If there is an error processing the request, this page will be displayed to the user. You can insert macros in this file to represent values of fields defined by your feedback form. Open ez-error_page.htm for an example.
Receipt Text (Optional)
After the message has been sent by E-Forms EZ, it can also send a Receipt message to the user who filled out the form. This is a second and separate message you can send to the user as a courtesy or confirmation. If you do not set a value for the receipt_text field, no receipt will be sent. Open ez-receipt_text..txt.for an example.
Results File (Optional)
You can save the results of a form submission to a file on disk. By default the results are saved one field per line in a text file. If you create a template file, you can customize how the results are saved. Open ez-results_file_template.txt for an example.
You can save default values in e-forms.ini and place that file on your web server along with e-forms.exe. If a form is submitted without a value for a field, the program will look in this file to find the default value.
How it Works
The caller views your Feedback Form and fills out the info. He clicks the Submit button, which runs e-forms.exe (the action for that form). The program reads the information submitted by the form and creates the e-mail message. All macros in the Message Text and Response Page files are replaced with their values as set in the Feedback Form. E-Forms EZ then sends the message and displays the Response Page to the caller.