When I allocate a duration of 4 days for a task starting on Monday the table shows that the scheduled end of the task is on Friday instead of Thursday. The succeeding task when linked is shown to start on Friday.This creates a problem when the same resource is to do both the tasks as he is shown to be over allocated on Friday, while he actually is not! What am I missing and what mistake am I making? This is not an isolated case as it is happening in all my projects. So Help!!
Hello Kedar Pitre,
You are describing symptoms that are usually associated with small offsets in the clock-time entries you have made in the schedule.
Go to the General Options and choose a Date Format that shows clock time as well as the date.
You will then (typically) find that your 4-day task is scheduled to start 1 or 2 hours after the project’s scheduled start of work on Monday, and this offset will carry over to Friday.
To fix, check whether you have made an incorrect manual entry for a start-date somewhere in the schedule. Also check if you have a small offset between the project, task, and resource calendars – which can cause similar symptoms.
Nice response Thomas. I suspect that you are using different calendars. One additional input is that if two tasks are linked with a finish/start relationship, it will not be the cause of the discrepancy. Using Thomas’s example, if the predecessor task ends one hour into Friday, the successor task won’t start until one hour into the day and the resource will not be fully allocated. If it is happening all over the project then high probability that it is due to calendar inconsistencies (project, task, and/or resource).
Thank you Thomas n Larry. Another query. When I save a project in pdf or on Word Pad, the output shows only one line per row in the task column. I increased the width of the bars in the Gantt chart, and reduced the font in task field to 8 then it would show 2 lines in the pdf. Any way by which the complete task can be seen in the PDF output?
Referring back to the previous problem of linking tasks. I checked as Thomas had suggested.The clock time which I have set is 10am to 7pm. However the tasks are from 8am to 5pm. Some tasks are starting at 10am even though the predecesser finishes at 5pm while some task are starting at 5pm when the predecessor task finishes at 5pm!!I have set the project on auto schedule. Any ideas how to rectify this??
1. Unfortunately Microsoft executes a print function that doesn’t always print what you see on the screen. I use a different PDF writer that seems to do a better job of printing PDFs. You can search for PDF995 and get what I use. Please note that I got this ages ago and make no claim that this is the best option out there. It’s just something I’ve been using for like ever… There may also be other and better options for you.
2. My assumption is that something is amiss with your calendars. You have a calendar that is set to 10a-7p conflicting with an 8-5p calendar. Check the project calendar, task calendar, and resource calendars of the tasks in question.
Hope that helps…
1. I am agreeing with Larry. The stability of printed outputs is not a strength for MSP. No doubt you have tried to manually change the row height. I’ve used Acrobat Pro as the default printer for many years and mostly like its output – it is far from free.
2. Also agreeing with Larry. Check your calendars and verify all calendar assignments.
In addition, keep in mind the definitions:
– Default start time: is the clock-time that MSP will presume whenever YOU enter a start date without specifying a time. Thus, whenever you used the date picker to assign a project start date, task start date, an actual start date, an assignment start date, or a start constraint date, MSP enters whatever value is specified here at the time you make the selection. If you later change default start time, MSP does NOT go back and change all your previous entries. This has nothing to do with calendars – which is of course part of the problem.
– Default finish time: same, but for finish fields (including the project Status Date field). Once again, nothing to do with calendars – though MSP suggests that you “consider matching the project calendar using the Change Working Time command….”
– Working time calendars are used by MSP’s scheduling engine to condition its own calculations, not to modify your manual entries.
A couple observations regarding your examples:
a. There is no obvious reason for 10am-7pm default start-finish times unless your project calendar matches it. You imply that your project calendar and all the task calendars run 8am-5pm. This mismatch is a setup for the kinds of problems you are having.
b. Task starts at 10am even though “the predecessor” finishes at 5pm. Check for the following or similar reasons:
– A separate, driving predecessor finishes at 10am, less any imposed lag (assumed FS relationship);
– The task calendar has no working time before 10am;
– An actual start date has been entered with a default start time of 10am;
– A SNET constraint has been entered with a default start time of 10am;
– A fractional day of leveling delay has been assigned;
– Any of the preceding conditions are inherited from a parent or ancestor summary task.
c. Task starts at 5pm when the predecessor task finishes at 5pm. Check for the following or similar reasons:
– The task is a milestone (Duration = 0);
– The task calendar has working time after 5pm.
I would impose a table where I could see actual start/finish dates, constraint dates, and resume date with full date/time format. Then look for occurrences of 10am in these fields. Those would have been from your own inadvertent entries and could cascade through the schedule.
Thanks again Larry and Thomas. Problem of saving in PDF solved using PDF creator. Now to work on the calendar problem.
I corrected the calendar to 10am -7pm as per our company timings before feeding in rest of the information in the project schedule.
a) It shows the changed time as long as it is in Manual mode but if I click Auto Schedule the timing switches back to 8am – 5pm.
b) The resource schedule does not show the change in time or holidays, so do we have to manually feed in the changes for each resource(employee)?
c) Without Auto schedule, the task type cannot be changed and it remains on Fixed Units.
d) Is there a way to import the change schedule in the employee’s calendar?
e) Is there a way to change the standard calendar or add our calendar to the existing 3 – Standard, Night Shift and 24 hours.
Got the solution to a), b), c), d).
How do I get the base calendar created earlier in a new project schedule directly without having to feed in the holidays all over again. presently it is showing the existing 3 – Standard, Night Shift and 24 hours.
Kedar, glad you got the solution to your calendar questions. You might want add a quick post for others who are looking for a solution and find this post. To answer your question, add the calendar to your global. With your schedule open, open the Organizer (File / Info). With your project on one side and your global.mpt on the other, copy the calendar to the global. This will now be available to all your projects. Hope that helps…
Thank you again for the quick response.How and where do I add a post for others to see? Would definitely like to assist others too.
I did put the calendar as you mentioned in the Global.For this I created a blank file and inserted all the holidays and other changes like we have a 6 day week. The new file (Project Template) can now be seen in Project – Information in a drop down as well as in Change working time under the Project Tab. But the holidays do not show on the Gantt chart which still shows a 5 day week and no holiday, when I open a new file.So how does one use the global Template?
You are welcome. Not sure what is going on with the Gantt chart format. As long as the day is setup as a non-work day, it should show as a non-work day just like Sat/Sun. Try entering another holiday and see if that shows correctly on the Gantt. If it does then look for differences between the two calendar entries.
Previously you said you got the solution for a, b, c, and d. I was thinking just a quick post here explaining how you were able to solve those items. That’s all.
Hope that helps…
Re. the Gantt chart not showing non-working time, make sure the calendar you modified is the one that is depicted on the Gantt. i.e. point to blank area on Gantt, right click, select non-working time, and verify the selected Calendar.
Gantt can only depict non-working time from a single calendar…..
Hi Thomas n Larry,
You got it bang on – checked the Gantt chart and corrected it, so now the correct calendar is in effect everywhere!
Regarding my previous post – a, b, c, d. The problem was solved when I clicked on Project – Information and changed the calendar from Standard to the one I wanted. Ditto with Project – Change working time. in the resource sheet changed the calendar for each resource to the one I needed. This done all the problems was solved less the Gantt Chart which Thomas helped out with today!
Thanks a lot both of you. I couldn’t have got the solutions going through the myriad of books/videos searching for these specific problems!