Microsoft Project 2010
The official blog of the Microsoft Office product development group. Learn how to manage your work effectively

January, 2011

  • Microsoft Project 2010

    Project Web App Help content on TechNet


    imageThe Project Web App Help content, available on, is now also available on TechNet.

    While the Help system within Project Web App continues to point to, this content has been made available on TechNet for those who may have an easier time browsing through content in the TechNet Library.

    This content is also available in a downloadable CHM file that contains all Project Server 2010 technical library content on TechNet.

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  • Microsoft Project 2010

    Microsoft is a Leader in Enterprise IT PPM and ALM


    IDC’s most recent MarketScape positions Microsoft as a leader in the Enterprise IT PPM and Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) views. You can download an excerpt taken from the “IT Project and Portfolio Management 2010 Vendor Analysis – Four Views to Enable Effective Evaluation” from IDC MarketScape Excerpt: IT Project and Portfolio Management 2010 Vendor Analysis – Four Views to Enable Effective Evaluation



    The other two views in the report were the SaaS and Financial Market views in which Microsoft placed as a contender and major player respectively.

    A few things worth calling out from the report:

    • Microsoft integration with Visual Studio 2010 and evolution of portfolio management solution along with usability features such as the ribbon UI, “position [Microsoft] better for enterprise IT PPM. . .” and “make Microsoft Project more accessible to a broader base.”
    • The report says for IT PPM/ALM, “Microsoft ranks in the leader segment, with excellent capabilities as a result of its close coordination between Visual Studio 2010, Microsoft Project Server 2010, the combined collaboration capabilities with SharePoint 2010, and emerging agile support.”

    Beyond our leadership position, it’s also good to see that we’ve been recognized for year-over-year growth indicated by the (+) compared to many of the other leading vendors that are shown as declining (-). This is consistent with the positive news and momentum we’re hearing from our customer and partner communities with respect to the adoption of Microsoft Project 2010.

    So if you’re looking to replace, upgrade or deploy a new PPM solution for your organization today, I recommend taking a look at Microsoft Project 2010!

    Arpan Shah
    Director, Project

  • Microsoft Project 2010

    Handling Changes to the Project Start Date


    How often are you told that your project will start on date x and then it is moved to date y, maybe date z before it finally gets going?

    Now when your project start date moves, you can just update the start date in the Project Information dialog and a lot of dates will update but not all of them (ex. deadlines, constraints, tasks with actual work). If you want those to move you need to go through Move Project.


    The advantage of Move Project is that everything in the project is moved with respect to its original offset from the project start date. For example, in this project task b has a deadline 5 days into the project and task c has a constraint to start 2 days after the project’s start date.


    Now I select Move Project to update the project start date to 1/12/11.


    And everything in the updated plan has the same offset as it had before. Task b has a deadline 5 days into the project and task c has a constraint to start 2 days after the project’s start date.


    In Project 2007 and earlier, you can access this functionality on the Analysis toolbar, Adjust Dates but there are a few limitations: deadlines and tasks with non-zero percent complete aren’t moved.

  • Microsoft Project 2010

    Help! Where’s the Help?


    OK. I’ll admit it. Sometimes documentation for Project and Project Server isn’t always easy to locate. It tends to be spread out. And sometimes it can be difficult to determine if the Help documentation you’re reading is from an official site. Worse, some URL’s have changed, and some new locations have been created. Let me help you set the URLs (and your Favorites list) correctly.

    Official Project Help sites

    Product information From this site you can try and buy Project, reach our partner and user communities, compare Project versions, learn tips and tricks, learn from modules and exercises, and see Project in action with demos, customer success videos and stories.
    Project desktop Help on Office Online Office Online contains Help for primarily the end user of Project and Office applications. Find Help articles, tutorials, and videos on basic Project functionality.
    Project Web Access Help on Office Online Help for Project Web Access end users can be found on Office Online. Help for Project Server administrators, however, is on TechNet.
    Project Server Help on TechNet TechNet is geared toward administrators of Project and Project Server.  Find technical articles on evaluating, planning, and deploying Project Server and other EPM solutions across your organization.  You can also explore troubleshoot resources and download the latest updates.
    Project Developer Help on MSDN MSDN is for the Project and Project Server developer, as well as for all products that Microsoft supports.
    Project forums: for IT Professionals
    and for
    end users.
    There are two official Microsoft forum sites where you can have your questions answered by power users and Project MVPs: TechNet forums for IT Professionals and Answers forums for end users.
    Tip   Make sure you set up e-mail alerts when you use these forums, so that you don’t miss any answers to your questions.
    Project blog That’s what you’re reading, in case you weren’t sure if this page is “official.” Scroll down a bit to find additional blogging sites that Project users depend upon.
    Project Videos on Office Online
    and the Project Channel on
    Microsoft Showcase
    Sometimes videos are the best way to get a point across. Project was a wide selection.
    Project Events and Webcasts Attend a World-Wide Project event, or view Project webcasts on TechNet and MSDN.


    Less official (but useful) sources of Project information

    Here are a few other places that have proven useful, even essential, for Project and project management.


    Here are a few more blogs that should be an important part of your Project support:  

         Latest EPM News 
    Project Programmability   
    Project Support blog 
    EPM Content Publishing News 
    Dedicated to Project Partners
         MPUG Blog
         Microsoft Project Official MVP site 

    Facebook There are a number of Facebook sites devoted to Project and project management. Here are a few:

         Project product page 
         Project management page 
         PMI page
    YouTube YouTube has thousands of videos devoted to Project functionality. Use SlideShare to download useful Project reference guides and project management presentations.
    LinkedIn The Project Users Group on LinkedIn is useful for networking with other project management professionals.

    If you have other useful sites, let us know with a comment.

  • Microsoft Project 2010

    New Project Server 2010 content


    Customer requests fueled two new documentation resources for Project Server 2010! These resources just went live at the end December. If you have feedback on either of these resources, feel free to leave comments here, or send email to

    Article: Archive a completed project

    This article details the standard method for archiving completed projects, as performed by a project manager and administrator. It also provides a high-level look at some alternate archiving methods, as well as some best practices for long-term archival.

    Diagram: Tracking time and task progress in Project Server 2010

    This Visio file contains diagrams that illustrate five different timesheet and task progress workflow scenarios.


    Standard (Single Entry Mode).  This diagram illustrates the workflow involved with reporting time and task progress if your organization reports on both of these in one view.


    Standard (Separate Views).  This diagram illustrates the workflow involved with reporting time in the Timesheet view, and task progress in the Tasks view.


    Timesheet Delegation.  This diagram illustrates the workflow involved when a resource identifies a delegate to report time and task progress on his or her behalf.


    Closed-Period Updating.  This diagram illustrates the workflow involved when a resource needs to make a change to a timesheet for a time period that the administrator has already closed to updates.


    Closed-Task Updating.  This diagram illustrates the workflow involved when a resource needs to make a change to task progress that was reported for a task that the project manager has closed to updates.

  • Microsoft Project 2010

    Project 2010: Creating New Views


    In Project 2010, we’ve simplified the view creation process down to two steps.

    Step 1: Update your current view to something that you want to save. In this example, I’ve inserted a few columns and applied a group to the Task Usage view.


    Step 2: On the View tab, from any of the view dropdowns, click Save View.


    A dialog will pop up and you will be able to give your view a name.


    And once you click OK – your new view is now being displayed and will show up in the view dropdown list.


    So, what’s going on behind the scenes?

    A view consists of four elements– a screen, table, group, and filter. The screen is just the type of view (Gantt Chart, Task Usage, Calendar, etc.). The table defines which columns should be displayed. The filter and group settings also define what the view should show and how it should be displayed. All views have these defined, they just may be All Tasks and No Group. You can update the Table, Filter, and Group for a view through the View tab – Data group.

    When you click Save View, in the background Project is copying the current view settings to the new view and creating a copy of the current table with the new view’s name. This way as you farther insert/remove columns in your new view, other views aren’t being affected since different views can have the same table. Project doesn’t create new filters or groups when you save a new view, instead the existing ones are just applied to the new view.

    Another change for Project 2010 is that when you create a new view, table, filter, or group it is automatically added to your global.mpt file. This means that it will be available in all of your projects instead of just the current project you are in. If you don’t like this functionality, you can turn this off on the Advanced tab of the Project Options dialog. Also, note that you’ll still have to manually add items to the enterprise global just like in previous versions.

    Another advantage of having items saved to the global, besides that they’ll be available in all of your projects, is that you can go back to the global copy if you no longer want your local version. For example, in the first image in this article, notice how I’m in the task usage view but it is no longer the original task usage view I started out with – I’ve changed the columns and applied a grouping. If I want to go back to that original task usage view, on the View tab, Task Usage dropdown, I can select Reset to Default:


    Click Yes at the Warning.


    And then I’ll be back to the plain Task Usage view.












    Additionally, say I started with the view I just created, My Awesome New View, and made a bunch of changes to the formatting and such that I no longer wanted. I could click Reset to Default and get back to the original configuration I had when I first saved the view.

    Finally if I’m in the new view, My Awesome New View, and click Save View again, this time I’ll get the following dialog:


    And now I can choose to update the global version of My Awesome New View or save the updates as a completely new view.

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