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Predecessors and Task Dependencies

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  • #415349 Reply
    John Wick

    Hello I have a question, I have observed that predecessors and tasks dependencies are not enforced at the user level, for example successor tasks can be set as completed even though the predecessor task has a ‘finish to start’ dependency set.
    I was under the impression that Project would not allow it, and prompt the end user accordingly

    Am I not understanding the proper function of the feature? Can anyone shed some light?

    Thanks in advance

    John Wick

    #415350 Reply
    Heather Agee

    Hi, unfortunately MS Project will allow you to do a lot of things you should not do, like what you are describing, which is called an out of aequence update. To help prevent this, you can put processes in place to update logic prior to marking successor tasks complete out of sequence to show the new order of activities and there are also softwares out there that will find them for you as well-I think most 14-point schedule asseasment softwares have this feature now.

    #415356 Reply
    Larry Christofaro

    Hi John, Heather is correct. Project lets you do whatever you want, including bypassing a planning constraint. It does have advantages as the actual schedule conflicts with plan, but you certainly have a good point. There is an option under the File ribbon, Options, then Schedule tab called “Show scheduling messages” that is supposed to provide a warning when that happens. Unfortunately I just checked this but wasn’t working as expected. Not sure what happened.

    #415358 Reply
    Thomas Boyle

    Heather and Larry have got it right. In MS Project as well as other scheduling tools, “Actual” dates will always override any logic-driven dates – if an FS successor is able to start (and even finish) before the predecessor finishes, then the FS logic is clearly incorrect. (While such out-of-sequence progress is common in real projects, I believe it is particularly prevalent in MSP schedules.) Any “feature” to prevent this would likely lead to an unacceptable user experience.

    MSP’s most obvious response to out-of-sequence progress depends on the “split-in-progress tasks” checkbox in the Schedule Options. Checking the box enforces the predecessor relationships on the un-completed parts of out-of-sequence tasks; i.e. MSP suspends the in-progress work until the predecessors are finished. If the box is unchecked, then MSP ignores the predecessor relationships and allows the task to proceed without disruption until it is complete.

    Out-of-sequence progress also affects logic flow through the schedule. Depending on the MSP version employed, there may be unintended and potentially severe consequences for the schedule dates, Total Slack and the “Critical” flag. See Avoid Out of Sequence Progress in Microsoft Project 2010-2016.

    #415395 Reply
    Carlos Santos

    Dear John

    The MS Project allows many our mistakes.
    Regarding your issue you can not track future neither the past.
    You should review (update) your Schedule.

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