Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Change your default PWA site in Project Home

Thank you Brian (see article)! We can now change the default PWA site in Project Home. 
This is a nice improvment, in the same direction than the permission mode being configurable from PWA settings (versus the SP CA). Now orgnizations tend to have more PWA sites and do need more flexibility to manage several PWA sites. This is also why proposing the new Project Home was very relevant.

From Project Home, you'll find this new "Default PWA site" option.

Then you can select a new PWA url.

When you select a PWA site, Project Online checks if the active account has the right permissions on the new defaut site.

Then what's new? When you'll create a new project from Project Home, it will use the new default PWA. Also the "Go to Project Web App" link will open the default PWA site.

If you are curious, you'll notice when you hit the "Go to Project Web App" that the URL is the following, using the "default" property.

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Project Online permission mode directly accessible from PWA settings

When Project Online was released back in 2013, Microsoft introduced the SharePoint permission mode. I've never understood why but this SP permission mode has always been the default mode, where as in most of the cases, the Project Server permission mode was the one to choose.
Indeed the SP permission mode requests to manually give permissions to user in both SharePoint and Project Online, on every projects. Where as the well known Project Server permission mode, even if it is more complex (groups, categories, RBS), is much more simpler to manage once define. It embeds a synchronisation between projects and Sharepoint sites. It also allows defining permissions at group/category level and only requires adding users to groups.
At this time, we only had a few PWA site available for creation : 3 in 2013, then 10 few years later. But now we have up to 9999 PWA sites available, so organizations use to create more PWA site for test, demo, training, different departments, etc...
So at every PWA site creation, the administator has either to change the permission mode in the SharePoint CA (Project Online) or to run a Powershell command (Project Server) to switch from SP permission mode to Project Server permission mode.

This is now over since the permission mode can be set from the PWA setting in the additional server settings.

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New SharePoint Central Admin for PWA site creation

Just a quick post since this morning, trying to create a new PWA site, I noticed that the interface changed.

The SharePoint Central Admin has now the modern interface. You can choose to create a new site and pick up the PWA site template. Then you'll select a name and an administrator.

Of course you can still come back to the classic interface.
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Friday, February 8, 2019

MS Project formula: ProjDateDiff versus DateDiff

It is always fun to play with formulas in MS Project. It reminds me when I started in 2006 working with MS Project doing scheduling support for project managers. Recently I add a new request about formulas from a customer.
He needed to enter a custom deadline for tasks or milestones. He could use the default deadline column since it was already used for another purpose. Thus we created a custom deadline new field. Then we wanted to have the delay between the finish date and the custom deadline, with a sum rollup at project level to obtain the overall delay.

So far not a big deal... To calculate the delay, I started as usual by using the ProjDateDiff function. Note that I divided by 480 (480 minutes in a 8hrs-day) because this function returns a number of minutes.

However when I give a try, here is what I got if I set the custom deadline equal to the finish date.

Here is the problem, I got 1 day of delay while both date are the same. The trick is to display the time in the date format. 

My task is a 1-d task thus the finish time is at the end of the day (6pm). When I set the custom deadline, by default it will be at the start of the working day (9am). Thus the ProjDateDiff returns a 1-d delay. 

So I search for a couple of minutes around the date functions in MS Project and found the DateDiff function (DateDiff(interval, date1, date2)). It has an additional property that is the time unit or interval. Thus you can set that you need to consider days only in the date difference.

Now I get the difference between the two dates, only considering the date and not the time.

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