Duration Question Mark

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  • 1. Assigning a resource to a task that has a predecessor changes fini
    Assigning a resource to a task that has a predecessor changes finish time. Consider a scenario where my Project Calendar has working timings from 9:30 AM to 12:00 AM and 12:30 AM to 6:00 PM. Same pattern is followed for the resource calendar. I add 4 tasks. Link 1 to 3 and 2 to 4 with F-S links (0 day link lag). Now when I assign a single resource to Task 1, the task finish date does not change (its still 6:00 PM). However, assigning the resource to Task 3 or Task 4 (which have predecessors), the finish time changes to 10:30 AM from 6:00 PM. Can someone explain me this behavior. Note: One has to change the Date Format in the View Tab as seen from Tools --> Options in MSP to show the time component as well.
  • 2. Schedule from (date) in master project
    Hello, As many have been reading, I have a master project file with many (~30) inserted files. Some of these sub-project files have been created with a "schedule from Project Finish Date", although most are scheduled from project start date. The master project file is scheduled from project start date (which is 1/7/05). However, greyed out in the "finish date" box of the master file is a date of 6/23/05. My dilemna is that when I open the master project, those files that are scheduled from project finish date show a "finish" date of 6/23 (which is incorrect) but when I expand to show all the projects tasks, the "finish" date reverts to the true project finish date. Is this a bug or can someone help me to understand the behavior? At the moment, the users of the master file have to "show all subtasks" then "show outline level 1" to see an accurate finish date in the master project. Another way to ensure that the master file user can see the accurate date is to be sure the subprojects are open, though this seems to defeat the purpose of wanting to work in a single file! Any advice or suggestions someone can give me would be really great! ...L
  • 3. Changing Work and Duration Based on Resource Utilization
    I have a task that is estimated at 40h. The Duration and Work are set to 40h. I want to assign a resource to the project with 80% resource utilization. When I do this, the Duration gets changed to 50h and the Work remains at 40h. However, I need both to be changed because the resource will be charging 100% of their time to the project. Is there an easier solution than changing the Work to the same as Duration to reflect this?

Duration Question Mark

Postby cassidym » Mon, 19 Nov 2007 23:44:43 GMT

What is the purpose of the question make in the Duration column and ho
do you make it disappear? 

I'm new to Project (an old hand at Access) so apologize for what i
probably a very rookie question. 

Sorry, I seem to have posted this question twice.  At least I admitte
to being a rookie.



Re: Duration Question Mark

Postby Mike Glen » Tue, 20 Nov 2007 02:46:27 GMT

Hi cassidym,

Welcome to this Microsoft Project newsgroup :)

The question mark indicates that the duration is tentative or estimated.
When you actually type in a figure for the duration, the question mark will
disappear.  Tools/Options.../Schedule tab has an option to switch this off.
However, it seems to me to be a very unnecessary facility as, after all,
aren't all the durations estimates?  If you leave the question marks there,
you can filter for uncertain durations to allow you to firm up the ones
you've missed.

FAQs, companion products and other useful Project information can be seen at
this web address:  http://www.**--****.com/ 

As a beginner, you might like to have a look at my series on Microsoft 
Project in the TechTrax ezine at this site:  http://www.**--****.com/ 
(Perhaps you'd care to rate the articles before leaving the site, :) 

Hope this helps - please let us know how you get on :)

Mike Glen
MS Project MVP

Re: Duration Question Mark

Postby John » Tue, 20 Nov 2007 02:49:24 GMT

In article < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >,

The question mark simply indicates that the duration is a best guess 
estimate. You can remove it under Tools/Options/Schedule. Uncheck the 
option to "show that tasks have estimated durations".

Project MVP

Re: Duration Question Mark

Postby Mike Glen » Tue, 20 Nov 2007 03:07:55 GMT

Incidentally, I forgot to mention that you can type in the duration with a 
question mark to bring it back again.

Mike Glen
Project MVP

Re: Duration Question Mark

Postby cassidym » Tue, 20 Nov 2007 07:07:05 GMT

One more question. Somehow, I've locked my initial task so that it onl
shows it's duration as equal to the combined durations of the subtasks

When I try to extend the finish date of the primary task, I can't ge
the calendar to open. The only way I can extend the time frame is t
add another subtask or extend the last one.

Obviously, I've changed a setting that is enforcing this

Any ideas what I did and how I can rectify it



Re: Duration Question Mark

Postby JulieS » Tue, 20 Nov 2007 10:54:07 GMT

Hello cassidym,

I assume you are talking about the project summary task (line zero). 
You have done nothing incorrect.  Summary task durations are calculated 
by Project and are the span of working time from the start of the 
earliest subtask to the finish of the last subtask.  As you note, the 
only way to change the duration is to change the schedule of the 

I hope this helps.  Let us know how you get along.

Project MVP

Visit  http://www.**--****.com/ 
about Microsoft Project

Similar Threads:

1.Question mark in Task Duration

Can anyone help with this simple problem?

Why does the Duration box in the Task Form have a question mark after
the estimated duration?

Typically I enter new tasks in the Task Form. My default Task Type set
to Fixed Work. I assign a Resource and enter the Work in the fields
provided. If the resource is not fully available, I adjust the Units.
The Duration box then gives me an estimate of how long the task will
take to complete. Nice. For example a 1 day task assigned to a 20%
resourse will take 5d to complete. But Project displays "5d?"  I don't
understand why sometimes there is a ? after the duration estimate and
sometimes not. Any ideas? 


2.Red mark and blue mark in timesheet hrs


For some of the task hrs in timesheet, the hrs shows red and for some the 
hrs shows blue color.

I understood that for approved ones the hrs shows black color. But, what it 
indicates when the task hrs shows red and blue color.

Any thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you
Shiva Chaitanya. 

3.Sub Task showing Days and Question Mark

4.? mark in Duration

I know this is a stupid question, but why do the ? marks show up in a 
duration? How can I get them to default to not showing up? How do I remove 
exisiting ones. I have just taken over a file from a client tha tis filled 
with them and Im on a time contraint.
I knowits some simple function that I am overlooking

5.What is the purpose of the question mark (?) in the duration field?

What is the purpose of the question mark (?) in the 
duration field? I know it is used to indicate an 
estimate.  Is that the only purpose - just an indicator?  
Does it server any other purpose or control how MS Project 
works in any way?

6. What is the purpose of the question mark (?) in the duration field

7. Fixed Duration Question

8. duration question

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