2018/10/09

Let's embed forms ... rendered by KIE Server

jBPM comes with rather sophisticated form modeller that allows to graphically build forms for processes and tasks. These forms can then be used to interact with process engine to start new instances or complete user tasks.

One of the biggest advantages of using forms built in workbench is that they share the same life cycle as your business assets (processes and user tasks). By that they are versioned exactly the same way - so if you have another version of a process that requires more information to start you simply create new version of the project and make changes to both process definition and form. Once deployed you can start different versions of the process using dedicated forms.

Although to be able to take advantage of these forms users have to be logged into workbench as the only way to render the content is ... through workbench itself. These days are now over ... KIE Server provides pluggable renderers for forms created in workbench. That means you can solely interact with kie server to perform all the needed operations. So what does this brings:
  • renders process forms - used to start new instances
  • renders case forms - used to start new case instances - includes both data and role assignments
  • renders user task forms - used to interact with user tasks - includes life cycle operations

Worth noting is that rendered forms are fully operational, meaning they come with buttons to perform all the operations that are based on the context - e.g. if user task is in in progress state there are buttons to stop, release, save and complete.

Here are few screenshots on how the forms look like, these are taken from the sample projects that come out of the box with jBPM distribution



Evaluation start process form

Mortgage start process form



IT Orders start case form
As it was mentioned, form renderers are pluggable and out of the box there are two implementations

  • based on PatternFly - this is the default renderer that keeps the look and feel consistent with workbench
  • based on Bootstrap
Renderers can be switched per each form rendering request by simply appending query parameter
?renderer=patternfly or ?renderer=boostrap if not given patternfly is the default one.

Here are few examples of the REST endpoints that illustrate how to get these forms rendered

http://localhost:8080/kie-server/services/rest/server/containers/evaluation/forms/processes/evaluation/content
http://localhost:8080/kie-server/services/rest/server/containers/evaluation/forms/tasks/1/content


http://localhost:8080/kie-server/services/rest/server/containers/mortgage-process/forms/processes/Mortgage_Process.MortgageApprovalProcess/content
http://localhost:8080/kie-server/services/rest/server/containers/mortgage-process/forms/tasks/2/content


http://localhost:8080/kie-server/services/rest/server/containers/itorders/forms/cases/itorders.orderhardware/content
http://localhost:8080/kie-server/services/rest/server/containers/itorders/forms/tasks/3/content

Note that containers are given as alias so that brings in additional benefits when working with forms and multiple project versions.

And at the end few short screen casts showing this feature in action

Evaluation process


Mortgage process


IT Orders case


Multi Sub Form - dealing with list of items in forms



More technical information will be provided in the next article as this one is just a quick preview of what's coming. Hope you like it and don't forget to provide feedback!

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