CPS’ PS+ solution is an Award Winner at the #Microsoft Partner Awards #WPC16 for #PPM #ProjectOnline / #ProjectServer

May 31, 2016 at 5:24 pm | Posted in Add-on, Administration, Configuration, Customisation, Functionality, Information, Installation | Leave a comment
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I am pleased to announce that CPS’ PS+ solution was an Award Winner in the recent Microsoft Partner of the Year Awards 2016 in the Project and Portfolio Management Competency.

PS+ logo

http://projectserverplus.com/project-and-portfolio-management-award-winner-2016/

http://www.cps.co.uk/blog/cps-named-microsoft-project-portfolio-management-award-winner-2016/

For a full list of winners and finalists see:

https://partner.microsoft.com/en-GB/WPC/awards

Great work to all the partners that received awards.

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#ProjectOnline #OData reporting API updated to remove #HTML tags #Office365 #BI #Excel #PowerBI

May 30, 2016 at 6:36 pm | Posted in Administration, Configuration, Customisation, Functionality, Information, Reporting | Leave a comment
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Recently you might have noticed that the Project Online OData reporting API has been updated to remove the HTML tags, I tweeted about this last week. So before this changed the data would have look like this:

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Notice the HTML tags such as   and </li></ul></ul></ul> in the StatusSummary field. In the PDP the data looks like this in the Status Summary multiline text field:

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If you are still seeing HTML tags for projects these will be updated once edited and saved, After making a change to a project custom field and clicking Save on a PDP (this does a Project Summary Publish too) for this example project I then see the following in the OData feed:

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As you can see the HTML tags are now removed from the StatusSummary field. So now in your Excel or Power BI reports you will no longer have to either use VBA in Excel to remove these or use a similar Power Query function in Excel or Power BI as detailed here.

The only down side to this change is if you use a report that can render the HTML tags to maintain the formatting set in the multiline project level custom fields on the PDP this will be lost. For example, for PS+ we use a Reporting add-in that maintains the multiline custom field formatting as seen below:

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After the update this formatting is lost as expected making the data harder to read:

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All is not lost though, if you want to maintain this formatting just using CSOM / JSOM or REST to get the data for the multiline project custom fields. In the example below using the REST (/_api/ProjectServer) API you can see that the HTML tags are still available:

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Here the fields are referenced using the Internal Name rather than the Name, for example Custom_x005f_4d0daaaba6ade21193f900155d153dd4. So you will need to update any custom add-ins / reporting tools to get the multiline custom field data from these API’s if you wish to maintain the formatting.

Extract #ProjectOnline or #ProjectServer 2013 / 2016 Timesheet data #PowerShell #Office365

May 17, 2016 at 4:32 pm | Posted in Add-on, Administration, Configuration, Customisation, Functionality, Information, PowerShell, Reporting | Leave a comment
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This PowerShell script will use the Project Reporting OData API to extract the timesheet data between the given start and end dates. The user running the script specifies the source PWA instance URL, Username and password. They then enter the start and finish dates in yyyy-mm-dd format and run. The data will then be displayed in the console and output to a CSV file.

This script example can be downloaded here: https://gallery.technet.microsoft.com/Extract-Online-or-Server-c1cba361

To get the script to work you will need to reference the DLL as seen in the image below:

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This can be installed from the SharePoint Online Client components / management shell. I used the dll from the SharePoint Online Management Shell in this example.

Please note, this has only been tested in PowerShell 3.0 and might not work in other versions. If you have any issues try this in PowerShell 3.0.

Firstly it will prompt for the source PWA URL:

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Then the username and password:

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Then the start and finish dates in yyyy-mm-dd format:

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The script will output the data to the console:

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It will also create a CSV file in the same folder that the PowerShell script is run from:

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The CSV file:

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This was only run against a test PWA instance in Project Online and only my account had timesheet data for the given period, it will return all of the timesheet data for all resources for the given start and finish dates.

This example requires the user to enter the environment details when running but it could easily be updated to hard code these then the PowerShell script could be scheduled to run weekly or monthly etc. The start and finish dates could be made dynamic too.

Whilst this only reads data, as always, this script is provided as is with no warranties etc. use at your own risk and test on a test environment before using on a production environment.

#ProjectServer and #SharePoint 2010 / 2013 / 2016 May 2016 Cumulative Update #PS2010 #SP2010 #PS2013 #SP2013 #MSProject

May 10, 2016 at 9:36 pm | Posted in Administration, CU, Fixes, Functionality, Information | Leave a comment
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The Office 2016 May 2016 updates and cumulative updates are now available, please see the links below:

https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/3158453

Project 2016 May 2016 update:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/3115105

SharePoint Server 2016 May 2016 update – Project Server 2016 fix:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/3115088

The Office 2013 May 2016 updates and cumulative updates are now available, please see the links below:

https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/3158453

Project Server 2013 May 2016 CU Server Roll up package:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/3115024

Project Server 2013 May 2016 update:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/3115036

Project 2013 May 2016 update:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/3115040

Also worth noting, if you haven’t done so already, install Service Pack 1 http://support2.microsoft.com/kb/2880556 first if installing the May 2016 CU.

The Office 2010 May 2016 updates and cumulative updates are now available, please see the links below:

https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/3158453

Project Server 2010 May 2016 CU Server Roll up package:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/3115122

Project Server 2010 May 2016 update:
< no update this month>

Project 2010 May 2016 update:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/kb/3115001

SP2 is a pre-requisite for the Office 2010 May 2016 updates.

As always, fully test these updates on a replica test environment before deploying to production.

Introduction to #Microsoft Flow with #ProjectOnline #IFTTT #WebHooks #OfficeDev #Yammer #Office365

May 6, 2016 at 12:11 pm | Posted in Add-on, Administration, Configuration, Customisation, Functionality, Information, Workflow | Leave a comment
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At the end of April Microsoft’s Flow was made available as preview. Microsoft Flow is an If This Then That (IFTTT) service with many built in web hooks or connections to different services. You can connect to services like SharePoint Online, CRM or Twitter to name a few. A blog post from Microsoft can be found here.

In this post we will see an example of using Microsoft’s Flow service with Project Online – Microsoft’s Office 365 PPM application. When a project is created we will post a message in Yammer. Once signed in, click on My Flows from the top navigation bar:

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From here you can view preconfigured templates or create from blank. Currently there aren’t any templates for Project Online so click create from blank. On this page you will see all of the services you can work with currently in the preview version:

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Either start typing Project or scroll down the list to Project:

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For this example I will choose “Project Online – When a new project is created”. You then need to sign into the Project Online PWA site:

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Enter your credentials for the target Office 365 tenant when requested. Then enter the URL of the PWA site:

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Now click the + button to either add an action or add a condition:

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For this example we will just add an action without any conditions. You can add conditions in if needed though like below, if the project name contains “delivery” do something:

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Also notice the advance mode where you can type the query condition:

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For this demo we don’t need any conditions so I will remove that and just add an action and search Yammer:

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Then select “Yammer – Post message” and click the sign in link then follow the steps to allow the access:

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It’s your call to allow the access or not for services for this demo I have but only do this if you accept the terms of service. Then you can complete the details for the Yammer post:

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This is what I have done:

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Then give the Flow a name:

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Click Create Flow and after a few seconds you will see the message stating this was created:

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Click Done and the wizard is complete:

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You can edit / delete the Flow from the My Flows page:

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Now if I create a Project in that Project Online instance a new post will be created in the Yammer group. There maybe a minute or so delay before you see the post in the Yammer group once you create the project but here it is:

The project – “Paul Mathers test project”:

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In Yammer, the post including the project name:

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Notice the post if from Microsoft PowerApps.

You can check the Flow runs from the My Flow pages, click the i button at the end:

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You will then see the following:

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This is just a simple example – there is so much you can do even in the preview version of Flow – I’m sure more and more web hooks and functionality will be added before this is GA. Take a look today, it is very easy to use as you can see.

#ProjectOnline / #ProjectServer #Project site provisioning using #Office365 PnP remote provisioning #SharePoint #PowerShell

May 4, 2016 at 4:20 pm | Posted in .Net, Add-on, Administration, App, Configuration, Customisation, Functionality, Information, Installation | 1 Comment
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For many years now Project Server deployments have used Project Sites or known as Project Workspaces before Project Server 2010. Typically most deployments have custom requirements for the sites so custom site templates were created from a site created using the default Project Site template. The updated custom site template was then linked to the Enterprise Project Type so that new projects created used the new site template. The biggest issue with this approach was that if you wanted to update the site template later on down the line all of the existing project sites would either need manually updating or writing code to traverse through all the existing sites and make the changes. With the new online world in Office 365 there are other things to think about too. If you create a new custom site template based on the default Project Site template then Microsoft roll out a new feature in the base Project Site template – your new project sites wont get that change either. This is where the PnP remote provisioning engine is great. For a while now – at least a year or 2 I think, the best practise is to stick with the default site templates Microsoft provide, so the Project Site template for example. The Enterprise Project Types should use the default Project Site template so each new project gets a site created using the default site template. But what about my custom lists, or columns or views I hear you ask – deploy the custom artefacts once the site is created from the default site template. In this post I will give you a very quick introduction to the Office 355 PnP Remote Provisioning engine which is part of the PnP core component. PnP, known as Patterns and Practices – details can be seen here: http://dev.office.com/patterns-and-practices. This will enable you to deploy your custom site artefacts.

For this example we will look at the PowerShell variant: https://github.com/OfficeDev/PnP-PowerShell but is also available with managed code. To get started with the PowerShell version follow the steps in the GitHub link to get the components installed. I have created a project / project site using the default Project Site template and added a new list called Change Requests that is linked to a Site Collection Content type in my root PWA site collection:

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This list has two views:

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I have also updated the default Risks list to use custom content type and included one new column:

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I have added my new column to the All Items view:

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This is the new site template I want to use. Typically this is where you would save as a template but not for this example.

Once the PnP components are installed on your machine, connect to the source project site using this command – update the Url for your site:

Connect-SPOnline –Url <source site URL> 

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Enter credentials if prompted to do so.

Now use the following command to extract the site:

Get-SPOProvisioningTemplate -Out C:\Temp\PnP\NewTemplate.xml

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This process will extract the site definition and create an XML file in the specified location:

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At this point the XML should be modified to remove unneeded properties. For example, as this project site is linked to a project already the property bag will contain certain properties referenced to the source site – I don’t want to overwrite these settings on my target sites so I removed the property bag entries highlighted below.

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I have also removed properties for configuration I don’t need to update, other lists etc.  See an example below, I have only left the two lists I have added / updated:

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I don’t cover this here but I used Visual Studio – really one for the devs out there.

Once you are happy with the source XML file you are ready to deploy this to the existing project site/s. In this example I have a test project site created by the default Project Site template that has not been modified:

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In PowerShell I now connect to the test target site using the command below – update the Url for your site:

Connect-SPOnline –Url <target site URL> 

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Then run the following command to apply the changes:

Apply-SPOProvisioningTemplate -Path C:\Temp\PnP\NewTemplate.xml

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Once completed the test target site should be updated, in this example, with a new list and updated risk list. Once you are happy with the test target project site you could repeat the process on other project sites. I have found some settings are not set correctly and some do generate errors in PowerShell but there are usually monthly updates the PnP code so always ensure you regularly update the modules using the Update-Module command.

This is a very simple example using PowerShell, in production you might have a full script that has a list of Project Sites you want to update and get the script to update them all etc. Or better still, go down the manage code route and create an event driven SharePoint provider hosted add-in to do it. Either way, fully test this process on test project sites / projects first before any production projects / project sites!

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