Cascade Skyline - with Microsoft Logo and Project Support header - author Brian Smith

Topics for the next few weeks

Topics for the next few weeks

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As we approach the launch of Microsoft Office 2007 I will be covering a few different topics that fall into the following groups:-

  • What's New and Different
  • Pain Points of 2003 (that go away)
  • What else is new in Microsoft Office 2007
  • Predictions for 2007

The aim of my predictions for 2007 is to guess which will be the top support issues.  My plan is to be proven wrong - by giving the answers so you don't need to call.  My other general 2007 predictions are a winning year for the Seattle Mariners and relegation for Southend United.  I'd like to be proven wrong on one of those too.  Not sure where we will have our company meeting if the Mariners are still playing in October - not a problem we have had for a while.

So back on topic - I would love to have feedback from any of you involved with the Beta program on your experience (good or bad) and any topics you would like some discussion around.

But first a primer for those who are new to 2007 - or even new to Project Server.  Project Server arrived with the 2002 release and was a further development and extension of the Project Central technology that allowed centralized storage of projects.  This introduced collaboration opportunities for sharing documents, keeping an issues register and also some cross project reporting.  The collaboration features made use of SharePoint Team Services, and the project data was held in Microsoft SQL Server, and could use Analysis Services for reporting.  The 2003 release saw collaboration moved on to Windows SharePoint Services (WSS), the addition of a risks register and some general refinement of the product and performance improvements.

The next release - Microsoft Office Project Server 2007 - moves on again and this time gets deeper into WSS so that the Project Web Access site itself is a WSS site collection.  The project data is still in SQL Server, but the database structures are much improved and lend themselves to reporting from SQL Reporting Services as well as SQL Analysis Services.  Some of the big changes which I will elaborate on in a later post are the separation of task update status reports and time sheets; the client to server connectivity changes that enable us to virtually eliminate the need for Terminal Services for distributed installations and the new programmability model the Project Server Interface (PSI) .

So my next post will start on the "What's New and Different" list and take in such great features as multi level undo, task drivers and the demise of the "save as mdb" option.  Stay tuned...

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