none
MS Project: Subproject Links RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi there,

    I have a master project with multiple subprojects all sat within the same running network folder.

    I need to reflect the head-plan milestones into each subproject.  I set this up as Head-Plan copies within each subproject using predecessor links to the master.

    This works fine when the master is open; the problem comes when I close the master and open a sub.  Then many milestones seem to forget their link and revert to project start date (giving me a large lump of milestones all sat on the same date).

    Thing is, the tasks seem to stay where they should so are still obeying their predecessor.

    Has anyone else had this problem?

    I could really do with working it out before rolling out the template to the other teams.

    Thanks in advance.

     

    Details:  MS Project 2010 Standard.  NOT using Server.

    Thursday, May 1, 2014 5:00 PM

Answers

  • Buggslife,

    First of all, do you have SP2 installed? If not install it. It would also be a good idea to install the June 2013 cumulative update. All updates can be found at:

    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/office/ee748587

    I'm not quite sure I fully follow what you have, but this is what I understand. You have a dynamic master with several milestones that actually reside in the master and you also have multiple subprojects inserted into the master. You have created milestones in each subproject that are linked via cross-project links (i.e. external predecessors/successors) from the master milestones to those in the subprojects. Is that correct? If not, what exactly do you have?

    I ran a quick test of the above structure. I saved all changes and then opened a subproject, master not open. The date of the linked milestone in the subproject was correct (i.e. reflected the date of the milestone in the master).

    Some things you need to be aware of with dynamic master/subproject structures. They are prone to corruption. You must never move, rename, or save to another location. It is also not a good idea to operate the structure over a network.

    John

    Thursday, May 1, 2014 5:25 PM
  • The reason links in Project are fragile and prone to corruption is that they use the very old Dynamic Data Exchange(DDE) technology. It is DDE that's fragile, not Project.

    I get around fragile links in multi-project file scenarios by using VBA to export Milestones data to a database and then read the latest date info directly from the database, again using VBA, in the other projects. Links then take the form of the Milestone name (must be unique across all projects) for the code to use to lookup the correct date.


    Rod Gill
    Author of the one and only Project VBA Book
    www.project-systems.co.nz

    Friday, May 2, 2014 9:45 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Buggslife,

    First of all, do you have SP2 installed? If not install it. It would also be a good idea to install the June 2013 cumulative update. All updates can be found at:

    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/office/ee748587

    I'm not quite sure I fully follow what you have, but this is what I understand. You have a dynamic master with several milestones that actually reside in the master and you also have multiple subprojects inserted into the master. You have created milestones in each subproject that are linked via cross-project links (i.e. external predecessors/successors) from the master milestones to those in the subprojects. Is that correct? If not, what exactly do you have?

    I ran a quick test of the above structure. I saved all changes and then opened a subproject, master not open. The date of the linked milestone in the subproject was correct (i.e. reflected the date of the milestone in the master).

    Some things you need to be aware of with dynamic master/subproject structures. They are prone to corruption. You must never move, rename, or save to another location. It is also not a good idea to operate the structure over a network.

    John

    Thursday, May 1, 2014 5:25 PM
  • John,

    Thanks for the reply.

    You are spot on with your summary; "milestones in each subproject that are linked via cross-project links (i.e. external predecessors/successors) from the master milestones".

    I hear your comments about corruption and I'll have a go at starting fresh and see if the links stay in place.

    Has anyone else had this problem? 

    Friday, May 2, 2014 12:05 PM
  • Buggslife,

    You're welcome and thanks for the feedback. Keep us posted as to how things work after your fresh start.

    With regard to other users having "this" problem, over the years this forum has been active and even before in the Project newsgroups, we continually get requests from users who experience similar problems (i.e. strange behavior with linked structures). Often, but not always, the culprit is file corruption. I do not know why Project's linking structure is so fragile but experience has shown that it is and that is unfortunate because it can be a powerful tool for users who may not want or be able to use Project Server which is specifically designed for enterprise use (i.e. multiple users, multiple files, advanced reporting features, etc.).

    John

    Friday, May 2, 2014 2:50 PM
  • The reason links in Project are fragile and prone to corruption is that they use the very old Dynamic Data Exchange(DDE) technology. It is DDE that's fragile, not Project.

    I get around fragile links in multi-project file scenarios by using VBA to export Milestones data to a database and then read the latest date info directly from the database, again using VBA, in the other projects. Links then take the form of the Milestone name (must be unique across all projects) for the code to use to lookup the correct date.


    Rod Gill
    Author of the one and only Project VBA Book
    www.project-systems.co.nz

    Friday, May 2, 2014 9:45 PM
    Moderator