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

September, 2009

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    Microsoft Project 2010: Product Group Blog on the new Ribbon


    If you haven’t been over to the Product Group blog for a while, now would be a good time.  There is a new look and a new posting on the ribbon in Project 2010 -

    More to come – watch that space (or this one, and I’ll link).

    I really think of all the Office application Project benefits most from the ribbon – there are plenty of gems just waiting to be found deep in the menu structures of 2007 and before – now they are just at your fingertips!  Enjoy!

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    Project Server 2007 and the August CU for WSS


    You may have already heard of an issue with the August CU for WSS and potentially problems when re-attaching content databases after application of this cumulative update.  It is documented on Stefan Goßner’s blog at

    One comment on Stefan’s blog asks about Project Server databases, so I added a comment there (which isn’t live at the time I write this) and will repeat for reference here.

    The Project Server 2007 (or 2010) databases are not content databases and there isn’t really the same concept of “attaching” them as there is for WSS (or MOSS or SharePoint 2010) Content databases.  We do use the term DB attach for Project, and you will hear this more for 2010 and it usually refers to restoring the 4 Project Server databases and provisioning a new PWA site.  This process will upgrade the Project Server databases to the latest schema installed on the farm, in the same way that PSConfig (the SharePoint Configuration Wizard) will update the schema as one of the steps after applying a Service Pack or Cumulative Update.  You should never detach the Project Server databases during the application of an update (I understand this can be a common practice with very large WSS Content databases).

    And the good news for Project Server 2010 is that we will support a 5 DB Attach process where you can move the content DB and the 4 Project Server DBs between farms and provision a new PWA - WITHOUT LOSING YOUR WORKSPACES and without the need for stsadm exports and imports.  This is very cool!  More on this later – but thought I’d drop it in as it relates to the topic.

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    Microsoft Project 2010 – My favorite feature


    This morning in Phoenix Chris Capossela unveiled Microsoft Project 2010.  I’ve been working on the support of this next release for nearly a year now, and it has been difficult no being able to talk about it – but now I can!  To get the details from the brand new Project site on go to

    But now I can talk about it I just don’t know where to start – there is so much good stuff. The one feature I really like is the ability to have Enterprise Project Types (EPT) – which can be thought of as a template that defines not only the project plan (from a template) but also the workflow for project initiation, the department (another new for 2010 feature) that can see and use the EPT, and last and definitely not least – you can specify the template for the SharePoint workspace that gets created for the project.  And this customized workspace can use all the rich features of SharePoint and contain content too.  This new feature is really huge!

    I know there will be plenty of information coming out from the Project product team blog, as well as the Programmability blog, and of course Christophe’s blog (he has started already!) and Doug’s “McBlog” – which has some cool video content from the conference and interviews with various members of the product group.

    More to come soon (ribbon, task sync to WSS, backstage, user controlled schedules, inactive tasks, timeline, team planner, delegation, departments, Exchange integration…) – but I’ll try and give the support angle on the postings I do so as not to repeat the feature overviews you might see elsewhere.  And of course this is still a way off (1st half of 2010 for the release) so I’ll still keep the 2007 postings coming too.

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    Project Conference 2009: SA200 – Project 2007 Common Questions and Answers


    At the conference in Phoenix I had the pleasure of sharing the stage with Adrian, Rohan and Soroush to present some of the questions we regularly get in support (and of course the answers!) as well as take questions from the floor.  As usual with Adrian’s sessions it was standing room only.  One topic raised was identifying the version of Project Server 2007 – and then knowing what this version means.  This information is around the blogs, but we really needed to get this in one place.  Thanks David Hans and other for the feedback on this one.  As I write LaDonna is working on a KB to document server and client version numbers and the release they relate to – and this should go live in the next day or so. It will be is KB 2002211 I’ll add a hyperlink once I see it live.

    The other big topic was “check-in pending” and many people still appear to be suffering issues.  With a clean cache and latest updates we thought we’d fixed this.  If you still have an issue and good repro steps we would love to know more.  Accessing projects by both PWA and Pro, and also use of terminal services/Citrix appeared to be implicated in some customer scenarios – but good repro steps would enable us to dig deeper.

    Thanks again to the great audience at the conference for all the tremendous feedback.  The Microsoft Project community is really a great one!

    ****  P.S. The final part of the August CU has now been released (the SharePoint server patch) and this can be found at - with the full list for the Office 2007 August 2009 CU available at

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    Off to Phoenix!


    I’ve been a bit slow on the blog front the last few months – apologies if I haven’t been able to answer as quickly as usual – head down supporting the Technical Preview of 2010.  But I have changed the settings on my blog so people posting comments using the new “captcha” and using a login should see their comments appear right away – and anyone is welcome to post answers!

    I am about to head off for SeaTac and my flight to he Project Conference 2009 and looking forward to seeing many friends made over the years in the great Project community. Plenty of new fiends to make too – with an excellent turn-out in what are truly difficult times. Come and say Hi if you are there.

    Once the conference is over expect to see postings from all your regular Project favorites on the new version – I can’t wait!

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