MS Project Import / export

Microsoft Project™ (a trademark of Microsoft Corporation, from here on MSP) is one of the most (un?)popular project management tools, and Twproject supports both export and import to/from it.

In order to export a project from Twproject go to the project editor of your root (or even a branch) and just press XML format button.

An .xml file will be created and your browser will ask what to do with it.

The scheduling work done in Twproject gets exported exactly as it was:

If you want to import a root project go to “projects” then hover on Iand select “import: MS project”. This page will be displayed:

Then you have to select the file by browsing on your local disk and then press “go” button.

In case of import from .xml file you have to choose the language in which the file is written.

If everything goes well then follow the link (the same name of the project on MSP), and check out the structure on the Gantt editor:

What actually happens when you are importing/exporting projects from/to MSP?

First of all, consider that the two applications have a different underlying model of “project”. Twproject has a notion of status distinct from duration, and MSP doesn’t.

Another difference concerns resources. MSP resources are relatively poor objects, so when you are exporting from Twproject you are losing most resource data, except for names, and when importing you will get an almost empty resource record. When importing, Twproject tries to guess if the resource exists already by using name and surname (the only data that MSP export is sending).

The absence of a project status in MSP implies that when you are exporting the status will be lost and when importing the status will be calculated using project dates.

We strongly suggest revising all the project and resources created after import.

This module will satisfy people that use MSP or other clients basically as a Gantt-drawing tool. MSP power users will never be satisfied, as the two applications have a deeply different model; same for Twproject power users. This functionality can be of use also for those who are forced to have a MSP output for corporate and/or certification purposes (we know people that use Twproject and export to MSP only when they have to send the project structure to review staff).

Summing up, in exporting and importing we always lose some data, but these functions may still be quite useful.

Since Twproject version 5, dependencies can be set also between non brother projects. So from MS project:

You get:

with the correct status change automation in place.