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JotForm is a free online form builder which helps you create online forms without writing a single line of code. No sign-up required.

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We believe that if one user has a question, there could be more users who may have the same question. This is why many of our support forum threads are public and available to be searched and viewed. If you’d like help immediately, feel free to search for a similar question, or submit your question or concern.


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    I wish you would make it easy for users to save the data they enter int

    Asked by marxmyth on December 14, 2015 at 01:11 PM

    I wish you would make it easy for users to save the data they enter into their forms and come back at a later time to finish. This was easy on Adobe and Cognito also makes it easy. I know it can be done, but it is not simple.



    This is a re-post of a comment on 7 Reasons Why JotForm is the Best Adobe FormsCentral Alternative

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    JotForm Support

    Answered by BJoanna on December 14, 2015 at 03:47 PM

    Thank you for contacting us.

    I do not know how this was done on Adobe and Cognito, but with JotForm it is also possible to save form and continue later. You might consider using one of the following options: 

    1. How to Enable Auto fill feature - save form entries to continue later 

    Auto fill method is based on browser local storage. It is saving the form data on users browser, so user can open the form later and he/she will see the past data. Note - user will need to use same browser to access data.

    2. How to save form to continue later (Session method)

    The Session method is saving the data on our servers. With this method you will need to use two forms, one for session generation and second as primary. Then users will be able to access their sessions from any locations.

    Auto Fill feature is very simple solution.

    Hope this will help. Let us know if you need further assistance.

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    Answered by marxmyth on December 14, 2015 at 04:45 PM
    I'm sorry, but this scares the hell out of me. There are too many steps and
    too many things that can go wrong. We're giving away $300,000 in
    scholarships based on our Jotform based application and I'm concerned that
    if I make one error, students' data will get lost.
    This is to me the most important feature I look for in a form program and
    Jotform makes just about everything else super simple, but somehow leaves
    this complicated step to the users.
    I've asked this question twice now and gotten two different answers. I'm
    not sure which method is the most reliable. The other method involved using
    {edit_link}
    You have so many brilliant widgets. Why not create a widgit that allows
    users to save forms and return to them.
    ...
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    JotForm Support

    Answered by EltonCris on December 14, 2015 at 08:56 PM

    Thanks for your reply and we understand how you feel about this.

    First off, no data will be lost as soon as the user starts filling the form. As long as the user returns to the form URL with session parameter provided to them through the autoresponder message, they should be able to see the partial data that was initially saved (thus, if you're going to use the session method which is the most reliable one since data can be accessed using different browsers). I believe this is similar to the other services and is commonly used in which users are provided with the URL to continue later. However, this requires page break tool as mentioned on the guide in order for this to work. If you need help on implementing this to your form, let us know and we'd be more than happy to assist you.

    Regards!

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    Answered by marxmyth on January 01, 2016 at 09:45 PM
    Yes, I definitely need help. I've spent hours trying to make it work only
    was able to save the first page of my data once, but it never showed up
    again. I've even tried with a simple form with just two pages and it hasn't
    worked.
    Do I need to change settings on the next and back commands so they save the
    data?
    ...
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    Answered by marxmyth on January 01, 2016 at 10:45 PM
    The key forms I need to save data from are;
    Starting form for BECA's 2016 Common Scholarship Application
    and
    BECA 2016 Application and Selected Scholarships, Final 1.0 January 4, 2016
    ...
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    JotForm Support

    Answered by Kevin_G on January 02, 2016 at 12:27 AM

    Hi,

    I think the best and easiest way to achieve what you want is following the guide provided by my colleague BJoanna above, you do not need to add any element to your form, just follow the steps and turn on the feature, this is the guide : http://www.jotform.com/help/227-How-to-Enable-Auto-Fill-Feature 

    Try doing it and let us know if it works for you.

     

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    Answered by marxmyth on January 02, 2016 at 01:45 AM
    No, that won't work. Many students will complete the form on the same
    computer. I need the session method.
    Sent from my iPhone
    ...
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    JotForm Support

    Answered by Charlie on January 02, 2016 at 07:18 AM

    You seem to have already setup properly the form.

    1st form creates the session, then redirect the user to the 2nd form with the session identifier.

    I made a test submission in your form 1, it redirected me to this session link for form 2: https://form.jotform.com/53633624114954?session=charmiequino@gmail.com-327544682871590994 

    The data filled out on each page will only be saved when you click the next button, see that my form already has values on it.

    Please note that form data on sessions won't be available to be accessed on your end, because they are stored as a temporary session in our servers. You can only access those submissions when the users click the submit button.

     

    If you wish your users to make a submission (wherein you can access it already), and let them update it, then you can follow this guide that uses the edit link feature: http://www.jotform.com/help/40-How-to-Let-Users-Update-Their-Form-Submissions-at-a-Later-Date 

    Here's a sample form: https://form.jotform.com/60013291126947 

    Noticed that I add "Save" button on each page, they are actually "Submit" buttons. So every time the user clicks it, the submissions are actually saved and you can view it in your end.

     

    I then created an autoresponder where the edit link is added, I want the user to be update or continue filling out the form, in case he/she has not finished all the pages.

     

    The only problem I'm seeing on this is that as long as they have the edit link, they will be able to update their submission anytime. I'm not sure if that is a flaw on your process flow or if you technically allow it. Feel free to make a test submission on my form and see how it works.

    I hope that helps. 

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    Answered by marxmyth on January 02, 2016 at 09:44 AM
    I've tried many times. I put my info into the first form, then get the
    email, and open the URL, fill out some information on each page, clicking
    the "next" button to move from page to page. Then I close the form, and
    reopen it and my information has all disappeared.
    Why did it work for you and not for me?
    Mark
    ...
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    Answered by marxmyth on January 02, 2016 at 11:44 AM
    I've tried it many times and it won't save for me. I had two other people
    try and it saved data for one, but not the other.
    I really need your help as this needs to work 100% of the time and I need
    to post it on Monday.
    I went to the link you sent me and saw your data. But, when I put in new
    data on page 3, it was not saved.
    ...
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    Answered by marxmyth on January 02, 2016 at 11:44 AM
    I went into the form that you saved and changed the last name, and then
    closed the window. When I came back, the change I made was there, so the
    form seems to be able to save work on page one and two, but not three.
    Mark
    ...
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    JotForm Support

    Answered by Boris on January 02, 2016 at 06:05 PM

    Mark, I see why the session differs for you and appears not to be saved. The link to create a session in your Thank You page is this one:

    https://form.jotform.com/53633624114954?session={email}-{id}

    The link you are using in your autoresponder emails, however, is this one:

    https://form.jotform.com/53633624114954?session={email}{id}

    There is a tiny but important difference, in that the first session parameter has a dash sign between email and ID, and the second one doesn't. This essentially means that your users are being redirected to one session initially, while are being sent a link to another session in the email.

    Either add the same dash sign to be sent in autoresponder emails, or change the Thank You redirection to a link without the dash, so that both links are the same. Only then will the session be correctly saved, and they would be using the same session both from the email and upon redirection.

    > I went to the link you sent me and saw your data. But, when I put in new data on page 3, it was not saved.

    I see what you mean, and this is caused by using the Form Tabs widget and allowing page navigation without validation. When you click the Next button on page 3 and not all required fields have been filled on page 3, the Form Tabs widget takes over and allows you to navigate to the next page by bypassing the regular session saving mechanism.

    The Back button will always save the session anyway, so that can be used as a workaround if you want to keep having page navigation without validation enabled.

    Please do try using the same session link in the Thank You redirect and emails, to see if that resolves the initial issue you were having, and let us know how it goes. Thank you.

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    Answered by marxmyth on January 03, 2016 at 01:46 AM
    Thanks for the clarification on the Thank You page. I have decided to set
    it to just give the user a default message saying "check your email for a
    link to the main application form." That way, if the user enters an
    incorrect email address, he or she will not be able to start the
    application. I know I could pass the user's email address to the main form,
    but think it is better if the user is forced to go to his or her email, so
    they will remember in the future that is where they need to go to get the
    link to their saved data.
    Since the first page doesn't have a "back" button, how is that data getting
    saved? Also, why is the second page getting saved? I don't know if my
    testers used the back button.
    Mark
    ...
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    JotForm Support

    Answered by Boris on January 03, 2016 at 10:52 AM

    You are kindly welcome, Mark, glad to hear that the issue with the session links in emails is resolved.

    When it comes to when the data is saved, it is saved (1) every time that the Back button is pressed, or (2) every time when the Next button is pressed if all of the required fields on that page have been filled.

    Since all the required fields on page 1 were filled, when you've clicked on the Next button, it successfully saved the session.

    The problem you were experiencing on page 3 was because not all required fields were filled on page 3 when you've clicked on the Next button. Because you are using the Form Tabs widget and enabled page navigation without validation, the widget allowed you to still navigate to page 4, without saving the session.

    So yes, the Next button saves the session as well, but in your particular form the Next button may not save all progress on a page if all the required fields on that page are not filled when you click on the Next button. This is caused by the option in the Form Tabs widget where you've allowed page navigation without validation.

    If this option is disabled, users will not be able to navigate to next page unless all required fields have been filled, and this will allow for the session to be saved successfully every time they navigate with the Next or Back button.

    I hope this helps.