Using Linked Projects Instead of Master Projects

DCarter asks:

I have one Project Manager who is using a Master Project with multiple sub projects. The Master Project is now showing up on timesheets for a few resources. We are finding that when the resource submits time against the task under the Master Project instead of the regular project that the actual time in the OLAP cube is off. Does anyone have any ideas why this happens and if there is a way to remove the Master Project from timesheets?

Mark Everett answers:

Using Master Projects in Project Server isn’t recommended because of the impact on resource allocation. On every Project Server implementation I have worked the ability to use Master Projects on the Server has been turned off.

There is no way that I know of to remove the Master Project from the Task Page. I would remove the entire project and have your project manager used linked projects instead. I have a job aid that explains how to do this:

Procedure: To create links between tasks in Enterprise Projects, follow the steps shown below.

Step Action

1. In Project Professional 2003, connect to Project Server and open a new blank project.
2. Click Insert – Project…
3. Select the first of your linked projects and click the Insert button. (Hold the Ctrl key to select multiple projects)
4. DO NOT expand this subproject until you have inserted all of the subprojects (e.g. don’t click the + sign in front of the project name).
5. Select the next blank row in the task list.
6. Continue repeating steps 2-5 until you have inserted all of the linked projects.
7. Starting at the bottom of the list, click the + sign for each subproject to expand the tasks. You have created a temporary master project. Set all cross-project dependencies in this temporary master project.
8. Select the first linked task from the first project, hold down the Control key, and select the dependent task(s) in the second project, then click the Link Tasks button. Repeat as needed.
9. Close the temporary master project without saving it to Project Server.
10. When prompted to save the changes to each subproject, click “Yes To All” and save each of them.


Completing the Procedure: The next time you open one of these linked projects, you will see “ghost tasks” from the predecessor and successor projects. These will be maintained as the projects are updated. 



Mark Everett

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