Microsoft Project 2010 Archives

January 9, 2010

Microsoft Project 2010 Tips and Tricks Webcast

I'm doing a free webcast on some of the new ways to work with MS Project 2010 on Tuesday, January 19, 2010 at 8:00 AM Pacific Time. You can register in advance at this link:

I'll post the slides after the presentation.

January 29, 2010

Project 2010 Tips and Tricks Webcast

In case you missed the live event, here is the link to the webcast I did earlier this month:

It covers how you can best use some of the new functionality in Project 2010 including the new interface, the team planner view, the timeline view and using active tasks to do scenario-based planning. Active tasks fill a big hole in Project and allow you to do what-if analysis in a quick and intuitive way.

Go take a look!

February 1, 2010

New Fields in Microsoft Project 2010

To accomodate the new features in Project 2010 there have been some new fields introduced. Here they are with some idea of what they are used for:

  • Active - Used to designate if a task is active or inactive. A great new way to deal with conditional schedules, agile development, what-if analysis. I'm working up a post on this.
  • Task Mode - Used to determine if a task is to be manual scheduled or whether they should follow the built-in CPM scheduling algorithm.
  • Scheduled Start - Used for Manually scheduled tasks. Start, Finish and Duration are optional for manually scheduled tasks.
  • Scheduled Finish - as above
  • Scheduled Duration - as above
  • Warning - Used with manually scheduled tasks if the timing or sequencing of tasks would be considered an issue (ie: dependency issues, summary doesn't match subtasks etc.) - See my webcast in the previous post for an example of using this field.
  • Ignore Warnings - Pretty much what it says....
  • Baseline Estimated Start 0-10 - Estimated Baselines are how manually scheduled task information is stored in a baseline. Regular baselines are used for automatically scheduled tasks.
  • Baseline Estimated Finish 0-10 - as above
  • Baseline Estimated Duration 0-10 - as above.

    Note that the Active field is a Project Professional only feature, so if you have Project Standard you may not be able to do anything with it. I'm not sure how Project Standard will handle reading a file from Project Professional which uses this feature but I'm sure we will find out when it is released.

  • March 10, 2010

    Project 2010 to be released May 12, 2010

    Latest news is that Office 2010 (and Project, Visio and Sharepoint 2010) are on track to release to manufacturing next month. Unless something unexpected happens, they are supposed to be released to businesses on May 12, 2010. Regular users who don't have enterprise agreements will have to wait until June for the software.

    I'd expect that they would be on MSDN at the May 12 date as well if history is any guide.

    To keep sales from completely stalling while people wait for the next version, Microsoft has also announced a "tech guarantee" which will give you a free copy of the 2010 version if you buy a 2007 version after March 4, 2010. Details are here:

    August 5, 2010

    The Best Project Server 2010 Book

    I've worked on a few books about Microsoft Project in the past and know how difficult it can be to get all of the information into a concise form. Gary Chefetz and Dale Howard have made an art of it with their series of books on Microsoft Project and Microsoft Project Server. Yesterday I finally got a copy of their latest:

    Implementing and Administering Microsoft Project Server 2010 for Project Managers

    It follows in the same tradition of their previous books giving complete commentary about the new features. But beyond that, and what many other books don't do, is it gives solid guidance about why and when you might want to make use of a feature and how you would use the software to reach your goals.

    MSProjectExperts builds their books around roles. This one is intended for Project Managers and it focuses primarily on the configuration and administration of Project Server to enable project and portfolio management. But also includes chapters on how to install and deploy Project Server across an organization. If you are going to use Project Server effectively this book is a must read even if you are not going to be administering the tool as it tells you what is possible and recommended.

    I also find that it has enough in it for a Project Manager with little IT support to get the application up and running and sustained.

    The advice given about use of the tool and issues with the organization is spot on. There are a couple of items I'd state differently but those are just minor personal preferences. I think there is still room for clarification in some areas - for example, I think that the timesheet and task status section could start with a better introduction - but the information is all there.

    Once again I find myself giving it my highest recommendation. If it saves even one mistake or travel down a wrong path it will be well worth it. Go buy it now!

    November 2, 2010

    Trouble with Assignment Units in Project 2010?

    Behavior of how assignments units are computed has changed significantly between Microsoft Project 2010 and earlier versions. I've been seeing this question in forums recently and think that this post by Heather O'Cull:
    explains it better than anything else I've seen or could write. Long time users of Project should definitely read it to make sure they are aware of the new behavior.

    November 5, 2010

    Project Server and Report Builder 3 Null Value Error

    I've been building a few Project Server 2010 reports with Report Builder 3.0 lately and have had to deal with missing values in iif statements. Unfortunately you can't test for the missing data in the iif statement as it evaluates all the expressions first so you need to test for missing values earlier.

    The easiest way to do this I've found is to use code in the Report definition. Right-clicking on the body of the report (not the table or chart) brings up the report properties. Clicking on the Code tab brings up a box where you can enter your custom code.

    In this case I want to make sure that at least a 0 is returned so I wrote this function

    public Function NullToZero(Byval x as long)
    If not x > 0 then
    return 0
    else : Return x
    End if
    End Function

    Then simply use the function in your expression like this:


    November 29, 2010

    Project Server 2010 Timeline Issue

    Some people have found that only a certain number of tasks can be put into the timeline view.
    Fortunately Heather has posted a workaround"

    To fix this issue you’ll have to re-create your timeline view, to do this:

    1.Take a screenshot of your timeline view so you can remember how you had the tasks arranged.
    2.Remove the timeline view from the current view by going to the View tab, Split View group, and un-checking timeline.
    3.Go to File – Organizer and delete Timeline from the right side (the box that says the name of your project)
    4.Go to the View tab, Split View group, and check Timeline.

    Your timeline view should be working again and you will now be able to add tasks to it.

    We have fixed this issue in the Project 2010 June Cumulative Update. You can install that from here This update won’t fix any corrupted timeline’s but it will prevent future ones from getting corrupted.

    I'm posting this here so I can find it again!

    June 28, 2011

    Top Ten Reasons to Install Microsoft Project 2010 Service Pack 1

    The Microsoft Project and Project Server 2010 Service Pack 1 were released today. You can read about it here: announcing-the-release-of-service-pack-1-sp1-for-microsoft-project-and-project-server-2010 To entice you to read the article and get yourself up to date (after a reasonable testing period of course) I present my list of the top ten reasons to install SP1. Without out it you face these potential problems:
    1. Saving a file in the Project 2007 format can corrupt the file.
    2. Project is very slow to respond when you sychronize with a SharePoint Tasks list.
    3. After you set up a new baseline, the "Baseline Work" and "Work" values do not match.
    4. When you remove leveling, pinned tasks that have actuals are moved.
    5. You are editing a project plan that is stored on a remote computer when the remote computer becomes disconnected. You are prompted to save the file locally, and you click OK. If you cancel the save process, any future saves will cause a crash.
    6. When the Team Planner view is opened, Project stops responding.
    7. When you have more than one project open and connected to the server and you save a baselines in one of the plans, the timephased baseline data in the other plan is changed.
    8. Text fields are not visible for a project that is saved in Project 2007 format in Project 2010 and then opened in Project 2007.
    9. Project does not refresh earned values (such as BCWS) when you click F9.
    10. Data corruption occurs for custom number fields.
    Seems reason enough

    About Microsoft Project 2010

    This page contains an archive of all entries posted to Project in the Microsoft Project 2010 category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

    Examples is the previous category.

    MS Project Tips is the next category.

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