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March 29, 2010

Cascading Drop-Down List in SharePoint 2010 using InfoPath 2010

Filed under: InfoPath,SharePoint — basquang @ 3:09 PM

Cascading drop-down is a common business requirement. SharePoint 2007 does not support cascading drop-down list by default. User have to write custom SharePoint field and it’s not easy to implement. With SharePoint 2010, User able to customize SharePoint form in easy way by using the powerful of InfoPath Designer. Following is the step guides to create a cascading drop-down list solution in SharePoint 2010 without require a lot of IT knowledge.

Scenario: We build a cascading for Address List. We have three list: City, District and Ward

1. Create City List

– In SharePoint 2010, create a custom List and named as “City”

– Add Two Item to this list: Hanoi and TP HCM

2. Create District List

– In SharePoint 2010, create a custom List and named as “District”

– Create a Lookup column named as “City”. This column get information from City List in the column Title.

– Add 4 items to District list


3. Create Ward List

– In SharePoint 2010, create a custom List and named as “Ward”.

– Create a Lookup column named as “City”. This column get information from City List in the column Title.

– Create a Lookup column named as “District”. This column get information from District List in the column Title.

– Create on Add new Item link you will see. When we choose City, District still have 4 item.


4. Customize Ward form to meet cascading requirement

– In Ward List, click on Customize Form ribbon button


– System will automatically open the form template of Ward list in InfoPath Designer


– Right click on District drop-down list control then select Drop-Down List box Properties from menu to open the properties windows


– In Data Source. Click on Add button

– In Data Connection Wizard, click on Next button


– In Select the source of your data, choose SharePoint library of list then click Next button


– In SharePoint Site details screen, click on Next button


– In Select a list of library, choose District the click on Next button


– In select fields: Choose Title, City, ID then click on Next button


– In next screen, choose Next button


– Leave the default name for the connection as “District1” then click Finish button


– Now, You will see the Data Source of Drop-Down list box is District1


– In Entries section, click on the tree button to select XPath

– In Select a Field or Group dialog, click on Filter Data… button


– In Filter Data click on Add… button


– In specify Filter Conditions, in the first drop-down list choose Select a field or group


– Select a Field or Group opened. Select District1 as Data Source, choose City in dataFields then click OK


– In specify Filter Conditions, in the last drop-down list choose Select a field or group


– Select a Field or Group opened. Select Main as Data Source then choose City in dataFields then click OK


– Click on OK to close specify Filter Conditions dialog

– Click on OK to close Filter Data dialog

– Click on OK to close Select a Field or Group

– In Drop Down List box properties, choose d:ID in Value: section then click OK to close this


– In InfoPath Designer, close the Windows then choose the Save and Publish button


– After Publishing complete, back to Ward list then click on Add new item link. You will see the result

image image

Two drop-down list has been cascading.


SharePoint 2010 provides a easy way for none IT to custom the look and feel of SharePoint by using InfoPath Designer, SharePoint Designer. Customize form in InfoPath Designer 2010 is a great new feature of SharePoint 2010. It’s cool!


  1. Ok, here’s the deal I don’t have infopath installed on the server or local desktop (hosted external server). Is there a way to do the cascading dropdown WITHOUT using Infopath?

    Comment by Julie Barker — May 16, 2011 @ 10:26 PM

  2. Using SPServices to implement cascading dropdown without using InfoPath.

    Comment by basquang — May 17, 2011 @ 8:44 AM

  3. Hello, Great tutorial I love it. I did all this and It’s working perfectly. My problem is that I want to change this form template to a content type and add that content type to a document library so that when users may choose these options when submitting documents. When you start an Infopath form from Office Infopath it does allow you to publish it to SharePoint as a Content Type but you can’t do cascading dropdown. On the other hand, when you edit Infopath form from a SharePoint List(As you did in your tutorial) it does not allow me to Publish this form as a content type.
    I want both cascading dropdowns and to also publish it as a Content Type, How can I go about doing that ??

    Comment by Siyasanga — May 26, 2011 @ 3:20 PM

  4. I am using InfoPath 2010 and SP 2007. My filtered field keeps returning blank after following your instructions. Please let me know if you have suggestions.

    Comment by Mycah82 — May 28, 2011 @ 3:02 AM

  5. Doing this I cannot actually add an item as the District gives and error showing Only posative intergers allowed. I can select the City fine, but the District gives this error and won’t let you create the item.

    Comment by Tyler — July 2, 2011 @ 4:11 AM

    • Actually, I missed a step that caused the issue.

      – In Drop Down List box properties, choose d:ID in Value: section then click OK to close this

      Now that I have done this it works great. Thanks!

      Comment by Tyler — July 5, 2011 @ 10:53 PM

  6. Yes, works, but how do you change or remove the tool tip “Only positive intergers are allowed”

    Comment by Larry — July 18, 2011 @ 11:03 PM

  7. This works for me… One thanks for google and a tonnes of thanks to you !! you saved me from some trouble…

    Comment by Vivek — March 4, 2012 @ 12:42 PM

  8. Many Thanks, it woked for me.

    Comment by Asif — March 14, 2012 @ 9:44 PM

  9. Yep worked for me, even with Multiple select!!

    Thanks very much

    Comment by Marcel Gaarenstroom — March 23, 2012 @ 5:32 PM

    • Marcel–you got MULTIPLE select to work! Oh man, how’d you do it? In infopath 2010, a multiple selection box is not an option for me! when i try and change the field, just as demonstrated from above, it says ‘you must pick a repeating field!’ :(

      Comment by Chris D — May 3, 2012 @ 7:02 AM

      • never mind! got it to work now too :) my only problem is that I would like to allow selection of multiple items that are located in different groups, however the checked items get a bit wacky when the parent filter changes…:\

        Comment by Jerry — May 12, 2012 @ 6:23 AM

      • nevermind! got it! just add a new control and bind that one. Duh! Thanks all.

        Comment by Chris D — May 3, 2012 @ 7:15 AM

      • ChrisD – can you email or post how you were able to convert the child field from a single drop down lookup field to a multiple select field? I have a requirement to be able to pick multiple choices presented after the initial filter is applied. Thanks!!!

        Comment by Jerry — May 12, 2012 @ 3:15 AM

      • let me rephrase–i can add multiple select controls, but i can’t seem to convert the drop down menu to one.

        Comment by Chris D — May 3, 2012 @ 7:03 AM

  10. Works like a charm…. Thanks

    Comment by Huzefa — April 4, 2012 @ 12:06 AM

  11. Very useful, I was fighting with this for a week thank you!!!!:D

    Comment by Craig Leader — June 21, 2012 @ 9:11 PM

  12. This helps part of what i am trying to do… My second selection should give me specific questions. How do i do it using infopath ? For example i want selection of a specific field form the second drop down to pop up a set of questions

    Comment by Sunil — August 15, 2012 @ 2:59 AM

  13. Awesome! Easy to follow and worked perfectly the first time! Thank you!

    Comment by Randall "texrat" Arnold — November 6, 2012 @ 11:05 PM

  14. Works the first time you select a City from the list, but when changing the city after selecting a City and District, random numbers start appearing in the District list.

    Comment by Kirk Jacobson — December 29, 2012 @ 2:16 AM

  15. Thank you so much for this!
    I’m having trouble getting it to work in datasheet view, though – is that to be expected?

    Comment by AJ — January 7, 2013 @ 1:43 PM

  16. I get to the last step and cannot change the Value to d:ID or anything else. If I click the button next to the values field in the properties box, it shows just one value from the data connection and does not display in the field when selected., So, I get nothing but blanks,

    Comment by Damian — January 9, 2013 @ 3:35 AM

    • Probably you have selected an item instead of a group. Look carefully to the instructions. It happen same to me. Choose the group, the one with the “+”

      Comment by Fernando — February 21, 2013 @ 7:25 PM

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    Comment by — March 1, 2013 @ 9:53 AM

  19. Have been trying for two days to make it work on an InfoPath Form of a workflow i.e. instead of the third list ‘Ward’ I have to create the filters directly on the InfoPath form that is created by the workflow. However the filters do not work as expected. I cannot get the cascading as expected. Any suggestions?

    Comment by Amy — March 4, 2013 @ 6:39 PM

  20. Nice blog… Thank You

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