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Creating an Alert message box in MS PRoject

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Pete McCann
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Joined: 26 Jun 2019
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Dear all, I would like to create a message box in MS Project that appears once the date of a particular milestone in a Plan of Work has changed. In this example, I have a task finish date that is the end of the project "Project End". While working on updates to the Plan, I would like a message box to appear if the date of "Project End" is later than its value when the file is opened (i.e. the changes I've made have made the Project End date shift later). I would like the message box to appear at any time during the editing or updating of the Pland of Work until the plan is saved. In the Plans of Work, there can sometimes be hundreds of tasks and I don't always remember to check the end date. I know that I can chage the format of Changed Cells but these changes are removed once the next change is made. 

 

Thanks for any help. 

Replies

Pete McCann
User offline. Last seen 1 week 1 day ago. Offline
Joined: 26 Jun 2019
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Hi Tom. Thanks for taking the time to reply. I am "fairly" new to using MS Project but it is an important part of my job now. As such, I've tried to develop some tricks to help me understand how the overall Plan changes when tasks are changed. At each new update to the plan, I copy the previous values of start date / finish date to two text fields. Then set up what we call a Delta view that shows the values of "today's" start date / finish date alongside the previous values (and set the Gantt bar styles such that both sets of data are plotted on the Gantt chart). So, effectively at the start of a new set of updates, both sets of dates are the same. There are a couple of calculation fields in this view (with visual indicators) that shows the difference between these two sets of dates when new changes are made. This is very useful. I also extensively use the colour of the Changed Cells to highilight the immediate affect of a single change. One of the guys in the team has also developed some macros that filter out driven successors and driving predecessors of a given task. All this is good but sometimes human error kicks in and we miss the most important thing - "has the end date changed" ??. 

I was thinking of somehow using an "event" to trigger the macro. The obvious one to me was the "Enter" key. If this was pressed (and it will be pressed a lot during a plan review / update) the small macro would run in the background but only show the message box when there was a change to the end date. 

Thanks for the suggestions - you've given me some good ideas to think about.

Best regards. Pete.

Tom Boyle
User offline. Last seen 3 days 23 hours ago. Offline
Joined: 28 Nov 2006
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Pete,

There is no built-in function that does what you seek.  It is possible to do just about everything you describe using vba (macro code), though your desire for complete automation from file open to file close definitely complicates things. 

The simplest approach, of course, requires just a few clicks on file-open to establish a Deadline or late finish constraint on "Project End" (equal to its Finish date.)  Any slippage against that deadline will then create negative slack that shows up in the Total Slack column, the Indicators column, and the Critical (red) bars on the Gantt chart. 

Good luck, tom

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