Context Menu? Trouble with Hammock Task when file saved in Project PWA RRS feed

  • Question

  • I'm using Project 2013 with Project Server PWA on Microsoft 365.  I have a type=[Fixed Units] hammock task (15 of them) set to [Start] on a [Finish] date on one previous task, and to [Finish] on the [Finish] date of another previous task (but guaranteed to always be after the first linked task due to logic of plan.  The Project files stored and published into Project Server.  When I open that project in Project Pro 2013 I get the error message (shown below as screen shot) as "Project cannot connect to link "<>\DevPlan!LINK_68" where the number at end is different for each of the 15 hammock tasks.  I pick "no" as I put in these tasks because I really do want them. The links appear to be in the plan and working as intended.  

    I"m puzzled by:

    : the dialog box mentions "context menu".  What is that?

    : if I were to find that Context Menu and click on Links (can't find that either), what would I set the "Change Source" to so that the error message would disappear and the hammock tasks would work as intended?


    Sunday, August 23, 2015 1:22 PM

All replies

  • Rob,

    I don't know if this will be much help as I don't do Project Server and I don't have Project 2013, but since Project 2010 is about the same maybe most of this will apply.

    First, I'm sure you are well aware that Paste Links associated with Hammock tasks are very fragile and prone to corruption. With the complex structure of a Server environment I'm not too surprised the link structure gets "lost". Unless you really, really need/want hammock tasks in your plan I suggest you find another method.

    With regard to "context menu" I don't know what the means either. I do know however that the old menu item of "Edit Links" that was readily available in Project versions prior to Project 2010 was relegated to the background. In order to have it show on the ribbon the user must create a custom ribbon item and add the item from the list (see mine below). Once you have the Edit Links window, you will be able to change the source.

    Hope this helps.


    Sunday, August 23, 2015 4:25 PM
  • John,

    thanks...  I'm aware of the potential fragility of Hammock tasks for what I'm doing now (making a plan at conceptual level) it's useful to do so. Once we set the plan and baseline I can hard set these [start] and [finish], I guess.  I didn't expect to experience the "fragility" so soon with such confusing dialog messages!  

    thanks for reminding me about the "Edit Links" command which I can get by adding to the Quick Access toolbar. Following advice the dialog box, I was looking for "Links" command and could not find.  It did not occur to me to look in the "E's" in the alphabetic list for the "Edit Links" command.   I haven't yet bothered to make my own ribbon tabs yet (like your "New Tab" above) as I'm used to Quick Access menu.  Focusing on doing planning with Project and not really yet learning all the new features of Project 2013 (doesn't seem to be that many anyway).

    For this issue, looking at "Edit Links" command, Project seems to think the link is "external" in another file; yet this is not true.  Frankly, the two links (for [Start] and [Finish]) are to a task three rows up, and on row up. Will have to figure that one out in due course. The other oddity I did not mention above is when setting the link Project reports an error "Unable to insert Object" error, even though it did it.  As I have real work to do, I'm choosing to ignore that message, but it's probably part of the story. 

    I think what I'm experiencing is a bug, but I guess we are conditioned to think Hammock Tasks are unreliable to use (even though used for decades).  I can find documentation on Technet to say how to make them, but that documentation is for Project 2013, so I guess it is not something they want us to use and now in Project 2013 when saving file to server is now definitely dead.  Sigh.  A useful thing.

    Thanks for you help. I'll muddle along!


    Monday, August 24, 2015 4:48 AM
  • Rob,

    Okay. Yeah when you throw Server and PWA into the mix I can easily imagine that could complicate the paste linking structure.

    As far as the error about the Project thinking the link is external, that sounds exactly the the result of file corrupt due to a link fragment. A link fragment is a partial link left behind when a link was not properly and fully broken. Unfortunately the Edit Link window only shows half of each link - the destination end. There is also a source end link and as far as I know there is no way to see that directly. Neither is there any "tag" on the source end like the little grey triangle in the lower right corner of the destination field cell.

    So, my guess is your file has some link corruption and before you can reliably continue, I suggest you clear corruption and re-establish the links.


    Monday, August 24, 2015 3:36 PM