Fourteen - Formmail
FormMail is a generic
www form to e-mail gateway, which will parse the results of any form and
send them to the specified user. This script has many formatting and operational
options, most of which can be specified through the form, meaning you don't
nee d any programming knowledge or multiple scripts for multiple forms.
This also makes FormMail the perfect system-wise solution for allowing
users form-based user feedback capabilities without the risks of allowing
freedom of CGI access.
There is only one
form field that you must have in your form, for FormMail to work correctly.
This is the recipient field. Other hidden configuration fields can also
be used to enhance the operation of FormMail on your site. The action of
your form needs to point towards this script (obviously), and the method
must be POST in capital letters.
Here's an example
of the form fields to put in your form:
= "/cgi-sys/FormMail.cgi" METHOD = "POST">
The following are
descriptions and proper syntax for fields you can use with FormMail.
form field allows you to specify to whom you wish for your form results
to be mailed. Most likely you will want to configure this option as a hidden
form field with a value equal to that of your email address.
type=hidden name="recipient" value="firstname.lastname@example.org">
subject field will allow you to specify the subject that you wish to appear
in the email that is sent to you after this form has been filled out. If
you do not have this option turned on, then the script will default to
a message subject: "WWW Form Submission".
Syntax: If you wish
to choose what the subject is:
name="subject" value="Your Subject">
To allow the user
to choose a subject:
form field will allow the user to specify their return email address. If
you want to be able to return e-mail to your user, I strongly suggest that
you include this form field and allow them to fill it in. This will be
put into the From: field of the message you receive. If you want to require
an email address with valid syntax, add this field name to the 'required'
realname form field will allow the user to input their real name. This
field is useful for identification purposes and will also be put into the
From: line of your message header.
you wish to redirect the user to a different URL, rather than having them
see the default response to the fill-out form, you can use this hidden
variable to send them to a pre-made HTML page.
Syntax: To choose
the URL they will end up at:
To allow them to
specify a URL they wish to travel to once the form is filled out:
can require certain fields in your form to be filled in before the user
can successfully submit the form. Simply place all field names that you
want to be mandatory into this field, separated by commas. If the required
fields are not fill ed in, the user will be notified of what they need
to fill in, and a link back to the form they just submitted will be provided.
To use a customized
error page, see "missing_fields_redirect"
Syntax: If you want
to require that they fill in the email and phone fields in your form, so
that you can reach them once you have received the mail, use the syntax
name="required" value="email, phone">
you to have Environment variables included in the email message you receive
after a user has filled out your form. Useful if you wish to know what
browser they were using, what domain they were coming from or any other
attributes assoc iated with environment variables. The following is a short
list of valid environment variables that might be useful:
REMOTE_HOST - Sends
the host name making the request.
REMOTE_ADDR - Sends
the IP address of the remote host.
- The browser the client is using.
(Note: In our case,
both REMOTE_HOST and REMOTE_ADDR are the same, since our servers don't
do the reverse DNS look up needed to generate the true REMOTE_HOST string).
Syntax: If you wanted
to find all the above variables, you would put the following into your
field allows you to choose the order in which you wish for your variables
to appear in the email form that FormMail generates. You can choose to
have the field sorted alphabetically or specify a set order in which you
want the fields to appear in your mail message. By leaving this field out,
the order will simply default to the order in which the browsers send the
information to the script (which is usually the exact same order as they
appeared in the form).
When sorting by
a set order of fields, you should include the phrase "order:" as the first
part of your value for the sort field, and then follow that with the field
names you want to be listed in the email message, separated by commas.
Syntax: To sort
To sort by a set
allows you to specify which of the config variables you would like to have
printed in your e-mail message. By default, no config fields are printed
to your email. This is because the important form fields, like email, subject,
et c. are included in the header of the message. However some users have
asked for this option so they can have these fields printed in the body
of the message. The config fields that you wish to have printed should
be in the value attribute of your input ta g separated by commas.
Syntax: If you want
to print the email and subject fields in the body of your message, you
would place the following form tag:
name="print config" value="email, subject">
allows you to request that all form fields are printed in the return HTML,
regardless of whether or not they were filled in. FormMail defaults to
turning this off, so that unused form fields aren't emailed.
type=hidden name="print_blank_fields" value="1">
form field allows you to specify the title and header that will appear
on the resulting page if you do not specify a redirect URL.
Syntax: If you wanted
a title of 'Feedback Form Results':
name="title" value="Feedback Form Results">
field allows you to specify a URL that will appear, as return_link_title,
on the following report page. This field will not be used if you have the
redirect field set, but it is useful if you allow the user to receive the
report on the f ollowing page, but want to offer them a way to get back
to your main page.
type=hidden name="return_link_url" value="http://yourdomain.com/index.htm">
is the title that will be used to link the user back to the page you specify
with return_link_url. The two fields will be shown on the resulting form
Back to Main Page
type=hidden name="return_link_title" value="Back to Main Page">