August, 2009

Christophe Fiessinger's Blog
Updates on Microsoft's Enterprise Social Networking (ESN) and Project Portfolio Management (PPM) offerings

  • Christophe Fiessinger's Blog

    Project Server 2007 Report Pack II – An incredible asset you should all leverage

    This is a blog post that is worth checking out! My colleague Jan Kalis just announced the release of the Project Server 2007 Report Pack II (recorded webcast and demo here). Why is it the best thing since slice bread? Well check out the following list of SQL Server Reporting Services it contains (and to make it easier to use in your environment it all contains full documentation as well as separate Visual Studio packages and directories of ALL T-SQL queries). I’m sure you will find few key nuggets in there that will help you with your day to day activities as well as surface key information from your Project Server 2007 Project Portfolio Management gold mine of information!

    Microsoft Project Server 2007 Governance Reports Microsoft Project Server 2007 Management Reports
    • Assignment to Timesheet Consistency
    • My Planned Time Off
    • My Projects and Assignments
    • My Task Count and Status
    • My Project-Oriented Timesheet Activity
    • Project_Detail (now includes includes deliverable and cross-project link information, along with a reduced size KPI Average graphical indicator)
    • Resource Activity by RBS and Position Role
    • Resource Allocation
    • Resource Allocation sub-report
    • Resource Capacity versus Demand Heatmap by Position Role
    • Task Update Compliance
    • Timesheet Compliance report ( updated to allow for multiple timesheet period review )
    • Active Resource Details
    • Administration Dashboard
    • Archive Project Details
    • Draft Project Details
    • Inactive Resource Details
    • Metadata Assignment Custom Field Details
    • Metadata Custom Field Modifications
    • Metadata Enterprise Template Modifications
    • Metadata Lookup Table Modifications
    • Metadata Resource Custom Field Details
    • Metadata Task Custom Field Details
    • Project Baseline Details
    • Project Task and Assignment Details
    • Project Type Details
    • Published Project Details
    • Queue – Project jobs
    • Queue – Timesheet jobs
    • Security Categories Modified
    • Security Groups Modified
    • Security No RBS setting
    • Security Permissions on User Level
    • Security Templates Modified
    • Security Users Modified
    • SQL Server Database Space Usage
    • SQL Server Fragmentation
    • SQL Server Table Space Usage
  • Christophe Fiessinger's Blog

    Windows Server 2008 R2 Desktop Tweaks

    With the recent RTM release of Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 on July 22, I have updated all my desktops and laptops to Windows 2008 R2, so far no driver issues on any machine (How to upgrade your laptop/desktop to Windows Server 2008 R2?).

    One thing I could not figure was how to display a preview of pictures using Windows Explorer and other visual effects that are standard with Windows 7.

    Thanks to a Microsoft colleague the solution is simple, go to System Properties –> Advanced –> Performance Settings and check Show thumbnails instead of icons and voila!

    image

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    Announcing the release of the Microsoft Project and Project Server 2007 August Cumulative Update

    We are happy to the announce the release of the August 2009 Cumulative Update (August CU). Cumulative Update (CU) are scheduled every two months, so the next releases will be at the end of October, December, etc.  Please note that the August CU does not contain all the fixes from Service Pack 2 (SP2) which was released on 4/48 (more SP2 info here) so you need to install both SP2 and August CU to have all the latest updates (in either order), hence no need to install the April CU nor the June CU (August CU contains fixes from both).

    Please refer to this TechNet article for deployment guidance: Deploy cumulative updates (Project Server 2007). After applying the August CU, the database version should be: 12.0.6514.5000 (see article above for instructions on how to verify the installation).

    Knowledge Base Articles and Downloads:

    Title ID KB Url
    Office 2007 Cumulative Update for August 2009 974982 http://support.microsoft.com/kb/974982
    Description of the Project 2007 hotfix package (Project.msp): August 25, 2009 973930 http://support.microsoft.com/kb/973930
    Description of the Project Server 2007 hotfix package (Pjsrvapp.msp, Pjsrvwfe.msp): August 25, 2009 973937 http://support.microsoft.com/kb/973937
    Description of the Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 Cumulative Update Server Hotfix Package (Sts.msp): August 25, 2009 973410 http://support.microsoft.com/kb/973410
    Description of the SharePoint Server 2007 Cumulative Update Server Hotfix Package (Coreserver.msp): August 25, 2009 973409 http://support.microsoft.com/kb/973409

    Related links:

    Deploy cumulative updates (Project Server 2007) http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd239177.aspx
    Checklist for deploying Project Server 2007 updates http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd630729.aspx
    Announcing Service Pack 2 (SP2) for Microsoft Project 2007 and Microsoft Project Server 2007 http://blogs.msdn.com/chrisfie/archive/2009/04/28/announcing-service-pack-2-sp2-for-microsoft-project-2007-and-microsoft-project-server-2007.aspx
    Announcing Service Pack 2 for Office SharePoint Server 2007 and Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 http://blogs.msdn.com/sharepoint/archive/2009/04/28/announcing-service-pack-2-for-office-sharepoint-server-2007-and-windows-sharepoint-services-3-0.aspx
    Project Server TechCenter (TechNet) http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/office/projectserver/default.aspx
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    Microsoft Project 2010 Ignite Training in Phoenix Sep. 13 & 14, last call!

    As a free benefit of attending the Microsoft Project Conference in Phoenix, September 14-17, you can attend this free training opportunity: Project 2010 Ignite. If interested please register rapidly since space is limited and we are almost at capacity!

    The goal for the Project 2010 Ignite Program is to prepare EPM professionals for deployment, operations and customization of Project Server 2010.

    The Ignite curriculum is targeted at EPM consultants, IT Professionals, Admin Professionals and developers that have experience deploying, operating and customizing Project Server 2007; content will be technical and will range from 300 to 400 level (Experienced to Advanced/Expert); this training is NOT for end users nor EPM sales professionals. With this in mind, the Ignite content will not be designed to cover all Project Server functionality, only the new functionality of Project Server 2010 (in other words, just the deltas compared to 2007) will be presented. The Project 2010 Ignite training in Phoenix will be delivered by the following Microsoft experts: Chris Boyd, Michael Jordan, Jan Kalis, Jean-Francois Lesaux, Brian Smith, and myself.

    Project 2010 Ignite Topics Description
    Introduction and Project 2010 Overview Overview of Project 2010 Investment Areas
    Planning and Design Overview of key supporting architecture for Project Server 2010 including the new SharePoint Services layer, new Project Server server-level settings, usage of Windows Communications Foundation, etc.
    Upgrade and Deployment Overview of Project Server 2010 setup, farm deployment, migration and upgrade from prior versions.
    Administration Overview of all key farm administrator’s tasks (timesheets, reporting, demand management, line of business integration, etc.)
    Operations Overview of Project Server 2010 server farm operations (monitoring, patching, business continuity management, etc.).
    Customization Overview of all new customization capabilities of Project 2010; will cover both desktop and server enhancements.

    Phoenix Event Dates:
    • Welcome Reception
      • Saturday, September 12, 2009 from 6:30pm – 9:30pm
    • Ignite Airlift
      • Sunday, September 13, 2009 from 8:00am – 6:00pm
      • Monday, September 14, 2009 from 8:00am – 4:00pm

    Event Location

    Sheraton Phoenix Downtown Hotel, 340 N 3rd Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004

    Registration and Contact Information:

    If you have any questions regarding the Microsoft Project 2010 Ignite delivery prior to the Project Conference, please contact us from 8:00am – 5:00pm (PST), Monday through Friday at: +1 (800) 528-1668 - Toll Free Telephone Number - US & Canada only
    +1 (360) 253-2971 - Registration Telephone Number - Worldwide
    Email us at: projconf@microsoft.com

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    The Ultimate Demo Machine: Get Ready to Demo Project and SharePoint Server 2010

    Doug just posted this important post: BE A DEMO MASTER – HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE RECOMMENDATIONS NOW AND BEYOND This cowboy looks familiar, I think he’ll be around in Phoenix :)

    image

    Related links:
  • Christophe Fiessinger's Blog

    My Top Microsoft Project 2010 Technical Preview Features

    Following a similar blog post today from Arpan Shah’s entitled: My Top Office 2010 Tech Preview Features I wanted to share my top Microsoft Project 2010 and Microsoft Project Server 2010 features.

    Similarly I have been using it for while to plan programs/projects for this upcoming exciting launch year and I have also demoed it to a lucky few :)

    So far my favorite features are (I’m sure I will revisit this list in the futures…)

      Product Feature Related Project Conference Session
    1 Project Professional 2010 Project 2010 - Project Planning and Scheduling Capabilities
    2 Project Professional 2010 Project 2010 – Team Planning and Coordination
    3 Project Server 2010 Project Server 2010 - Demand Management
    4 Project Server 2010 Project Server 2010 - Portfolio Management
    5 Project Server 2010 Project Server 2010 - Scheduling on the Server
    6 Project Server 2010 Project Server 2010 - Timesheets and Task Management Improvements
    7 Project Server 2010 Deploying and Administering Project Server 2010
    8 Project Server 2010 Project Server 2010 - Better Reporting using Microsoft BI Capabilities
    9 Project Server 2010 Project 2010 - Programmability
    10 Project Server 2010 can’t tell yet :)

    As you can guess I cannot say much so come over to Phoenix (need reasons to attend see this)!

  • Christophe Fiessinger's Blog

    Information Worker Competence Center - Achieving Business Success with your Collaboration Infrastructure (white paper)

    A good read that was recently published on TechNet, that discusses the role of the Project Management Office for instance: Information Worker Competence Center - Achieving Business Success with your Collaboration Infrastructure (white paper). On a similar topic you might want to read this recently published whitepaper as well: The Project Management System Maturity Model

    Abstract

    Competence Centers are the standard approach to managing shared business infrastructures such as Enterprise Resource Management and Business Intelligence. With the increasing importance of team and collaborative work we adopt a similar approach. Many organizations are now responding to the growing demand for collaboration by managing their infrastructure in this way. Investments in the collaboration realm are not just about the IT solution but about implementing IT-enabled change especially since “Business Value is generated by what organizations do with IT rather than by the technology itself”. This is especially valid for the latest Web 2.0 technologies providing strong bottom-up elements engaging a broad base of workers through communities, ad-hoc projects, team work and social networking.

    This Whitepaper outlines the functions an Information Worker Competence Center should include and in return what contributions to business success you should expect.

  • Christophe Fiessinger's Blog

    Great SharePoint Sessions at Upcoming Project Conference in Phoenix

    In case you have not registered yet and are still looking for reasons to attend, check out this sample of sessions presented by experts around the SharePoint and Project Server themes in Phoenix in three weeks, more info here: http://msprojectconference.com/

    Title Speaker Description
    Business Collaboration using SharePoint: The Value Delivered Today, and a Sneak Peek at Microsoft SharePoint 2010 Gideon Bibliowicz, Microsoft Corporation SharePoint provides Microsoft customers and partners a platform to build extraordinary collaboration solutions that encompass content management, business intelligence, social computing and enterprise search. This session is aimed at providing an overview of the SharePoint platform, why SharePoint offers a compelling value to the enterprise today and how it enables MS-Project users to create value for both employees and customers. This session will also provide a brief sneak peek into new features coming in SharePoint Server 2010.
    Introduction to SharePoint for Developers Andrew Connell, Critical Path Training Project Server's integration with SharePoint facilitates collaborating on projects within an organization and members of a team. With this integration, developers can extend both platforms to satisfy specific and custom requirements to facilitate unique business processes and add new functionality to improve productivity and efficiency. In this session you will learn what is involved in developing custom solutions for SharePoint.
    SharePoint Planning and Governance Todd Klindt, Solanite Consulting, Shane Young, Sharepoint 911 This session takes you through the process of developing a successful implementation plan for your Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 (WSS) or Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 (MOSS) deployment. Determining the goals and vision, stakeholders, level of customization or development, rollout, phasing, intranet, extranet, and Internet considerations and taxonomy of your portal are all discussed through lectures, hands-on experience, and case studies. This class not only covers what you should do, but also real world scenarios and best practices.
    SharePoint (or Project) Admins: The Reluctant DBAs Todd Klindt, Solanite Consulting, Shane Young, Sharepoint 911 Are you a SharePoint administrator that's been thrust into the job of keeping SQL happy whether you want to or not? In this session we cover how SharePoint uses SQL and how to keep SQL happy. We look at which version of SQL is right for your farm, how maintain it, and some of the options you have for backing it up. By the end of this session you will no longer be afraid of SQL.
    Opening SharePoint to Project 2010 Eamonn McGuinness, Brightworks The Challenge … Many customers today still manage work and projects using whiteboards, email and Excel. More to the point many of these customers do not have a commonly applied mature process for managing work and projects. Some combination of Project Desktop, Office and SharePoint would greatly help these customers be way more productive with their work and project management. The Solution … This session will: (1) Present a reusable real world process model for managing work and projects of various types and sizes. (2) Demo how Project Desktop and SharePoint can sit well together. (3) Explain and demo a simple but pragmatic process to use Project, Office and SharePoint for the flexible management of work and projects.
    EPM and SharePoint Better Together Tad Haas, Microsoft Corporation The Microsoft Enterprise Project Management (EPM) solution and Microsoft Office SharePoint® Server 2007 together provide the infrastructure and functionality you need to make project management and collaboration easier than ever across all levels of your organization. Combining the functionality of Microsoft Office Project Server 2007 and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 can help your organization create, manage, and collaborate on projects more effectively across the following three project phases:
    • Demand Management
    • Plan and Execute
    • Business Insight
    SharePoint and Project Server Co-Existence Me :) Discuss deployment scenarios with Project Server and SharePoint (together or apart/single farm or two farm), pros and cons of each scenarios and recommended best practices.
  • Christophe Fiessinger's Blog

    See you in Phoenix in a Month!

    Just booked my travel for the Project Conference, I’m arriving Friday September 11th at 6pm and will be staying at the Sheraton. If you are an EPM specialized partner I look forward to see you all during the Ignite training prior to the conference on Sunday and Monday.

    If you are still looking for reasons to come to Phoenix (we will have great sessions from great speakers as well as hands on labs for Project and Project Server 2010 not too mention the two days Ignite deep technical training), send me an email :)

  • Christophe Fiessinger's Blog

    Under the Table – How Data Access Code Affects Database Performance

    Just read this great article from Bob Beauchemin in MSDN Magazine: How Data Access Code Affects Database Performance. It’s a great reminder when you do customization why using stored procedure to access your database is a must compared to building queries on the fly within your C# code for instance. So next time you access the Project Server database create a custom stored procedure it will save you from trouble down the road :)

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