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  1. #1
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    Generating an MSP schedule plan (mpp) from an XL (Ms Office Excel 2003)

    Hi,

    I need help in generating an MSP from an XL sheet. Given the overall effort, duration of phases, start and end date and phase descriptions, a template can be prepared using VBA. I know for sure that there are ways to generate MPP files from an Excel sheet using VBA but I am unable to find any pre-defined code over the net. Has there been any attempt at doing this kind of work before? We have starter templates in MS Project for projects of a definite size and need to build multiple scenarios based on customer demand - I have created a simple XL sheet where given a definite size of requirements gathering and coding and unit testing effort (in hours) , and if we calculate effort for certain phases like Integrated Testing, System testing, etc as percentages of the estimated effort (the requirements and coding effort that I talked about earlier), it calculates the number of Full Time Equivalents using an estimation model needed per month. It also calculates the optimum duration needed to do the project. Next I am trying to explore if a project schedule plan can be prepared from this and exported to an MSP.

    If someone has already worked on this, it would save me a lot of effort. I know of no other forum that comes close to Woody's lounge in providing this kind of complex support.

    Thanks and regards

    Reinhard

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Generating an MSP schedule plan (mpp) from an XL (Ms Office Excel 2003

    Moved to the Project forum by HansV because it's more likely that someone who frequents this forum also has Excel experience than vice versa.

  3. #3
    Silver Lounger GARYPSWANSON's Avatar
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    Re: Generating an MSP schedule plan (mpp) from an XL (Ms Office Excel 2003

    Reinhard,

    I find it much easier when trying to load data from excel, to first create the scenario you want to use in Project and then export that to Excel using the File Save As feature. This will provide you with the excel format and fields you need. Then, after filling in the excel file, you could use the import feature (Template) to load the data back into Project.

    If you try to create a full project file from excel, it will get very complicated as you will need to establish resources, calendars, task type, load resources on tasks, etc. (There are too many loose ends that you can forget)

    As to calculating effort, FTE, etc., that is what MS Project will do for you based on the parameters input. Do you take into consideration resource calendars, shifts, working or not working weekends when doing your calculations? It sounds as if you are trying to build a small scheduing system and then trying to feed that data into MS Project to generate a schedule.

    As to building a complete MSP file from Excel via VBA, I can't say I ever tried it as I did not find that it would be worth the time and effrot to do so.
    To give you an idea of all of the data, export a MSP file to Access and look at the tables that are required. MSP also stores time quite ingeniously in "blocks" of data. If you really want to pursue this, there is a publication on MS Project fields that reviews fields and requirements that may help.

    HTH
    Regards,

    Gary
    (It's been a while!)

  4. #4
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    Re: Generating an MSP schedule plan (mpp) from an XL (Ms Office Excel 2003

    Thanks, Gary for your response. To be honest, thats what I have been thinking too and working on too. I wanted a skeleton schedule plan created which could be worked on further in terms of fixing resource utilization, dependencies, calendars, etc. I think your suggestion is the best course of action as I too do not have the luxury of a lot of time. Especially when we have pre-defined MSP starter templates that we need to comply with on many parameters (e.g. productivity factors, holiday calendars, and a few custom fields)..Thanks for your inputs.

    Regards

    Reinhard

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