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DataView vs DataForm

Posted by Clayton James on January 6, 2009

I was looking into the differences between the DataViewWebPart and the DataFormWebPart today and I found little information on this topic until I finally came across a SPD blog entry:

http://blogs.msdn.com/sharepointdesigner/archive/2007/04/24/spdatasource-and-rollups-with-the-data-view.aspx

Data View vs. Data Form

Before we go deeper, you may have noticed that many of us use “Data View” and “Data Form” rather interchangeably. In Windows SharePoint Services v2, we shipped a web part called the DataViewWebPart (DVWP). This web part uses XSLT to transform data from Data Retrieval Services to HTML. In Windows SharePoint Services v3, we shipped a web part called the DataFormWebPart (DFWP). The DataFormWebPart still uses XSLT, but now uses ASP.Net 2.0 Data Source Controls for data access. In addition to “view” functionality, the DataFormWebPart also introduced “form” functionality to write back to various data sources. We use Data View generically to refer to the feature set and all of SharePoint Designer’s UI still uses the term Data View.

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