Create PDF Forms using iTextSharp

Generating PDF forms in .NET has always been somewhat messy and complicated. I’ve seen people convert raw HTML to PDF or adding and formatting form elements to a PDF doc in code behind, etc. All those methods are highly time consuming and tricky. Easiest way to create PDF Forms is by using iTextSharp (open source) and Adobe LiveCycle Designer.

You can just create your custom form template using LiveCycle and then data bind the form fields using iTextSharp like this:

User user = UserData.GetUserByID(userID);
string randomFileName = Helpers.GetRandomFileName();
string formTemplate = Server.MapPath("~/FormTemplate.pdf");
string formOutput = Server.MapPath(string.Format("~/downloads/Forms/Form-{0}.pdf", randomFileName));

PdfReader reader = new PdfReader(formTemplate);
PdfStamper stamper = new PdfStamper(reader, new System.IO.FileStream(formOutput, System.IO.FileMode.Create));
AcroFields fields = stamper.AcroFields;

// set form fields
fields.SetField("Date", DateTime.Now.ToShortDateString());
fields.SetField("FirstName", user.FirstName);
fields.SetField("LastName", user.LastName);
fields.SetField("Address1", user.Address1);
fields.SetField("Address2", user.Address2);
fields.SetField("City", user.City);
fields.SetField("State", user.State);
fields.SetField("Zip", user.Zip);
fields.SetField("Email", user.Email);
fields.SetField("Phone", user.Phone);

// set document info
System.Collections.Hashtable info = new System.Collections.Hashtable();
info["Title"] = "User Information Form";
info["Author"] = "My Client";
info["Creator"] = "My Company";
stamper.MoreInfo = info;

// flatten form fields and close document
stamper.FormFlattening = true;
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