Due to the visual nature of NetPoint, adding and modifying milestones and benchmarks is best done graphically on the canvas. When the cursor is moved over the canvas, the date and day-of-the-week display above the crosshairs. As the cursor moves around the canvas, the date changes to reflect the exact calendar date that the cursor is at. If the date is a non-working period or holiday (according to the default calendar for the schedule), the text will appear red. If the default calendar were the Calendar Day calendar, the date will appear black.
Adding to the Canvas
- Click either the Start Milestone , Finish Milestone , Start Benchmark , or Finish Benchmark icon in the toolbar.
- Move the cursor to the desired date, indicated by the text above the crosshairs.
- Left-click with the mouse. The Milestone Object or Benchmark Object window will open.
- Enter a Description.
- Click OK.
- Click the Select Tool icon in the toolbar.
- Select the desired event on the canvas.
- Left-click with the mouse, and without releasing, drag it to the right or left until it lands on the desired date.
- Release the mouse.
NOTE: Dates can also be modified using the arrow keys on the keyboard or in the Dates tab. To do so, double-click the desired object, or right-click and choose .
- Click the Select Tool icon in the toolbar.
- Select the desired event on the canvas.
- To convert between start and finish events, choose or accordingly.
- To convert between milestones and benchmarks, choose or accordingly.
NOTE: Any existing constraints will be removed before converting. Once converted, the date is adjusted to maintain the current position of the object. For example, when a start milestone at 3/30/2010 is converted to a finish milestone, the date is adjusted to 3/29/2010, as the start of 3/30 and the end of 3/29 are at the same position on the schedule. This also allows the type of a benchmark to be changed without affecting float or drift calculations.
Editing the Description
- With the Select Tool chosen in the toolbar, double-click the description directly on the canvas. A text box will open.
- Edit as desired.
- When finished, click anywhere outside the text box on the canvas.
Positioning Fields on the Canvas
- Begin at step 1 of Through GEM Mode.
The Properties tab is where general settings are changed.
|Description||A text field for describing the milestone/benchmark. To stack, use the ENTER key. Descriptions must be less than 120 characters for P6 and less than 100 for Open Plan. Otherwise, they’ll be truncated upon export.|
|Abbr. Description||A text field limited to 48 characters to be displayed on the canvas if the description is too long.|
|ID||A user-entered unique identifier. By default, the ID is not displayed, but it will display before the description, surrounded by brackets, if it is turned on. NetPoint internal ID displayed below.|
|Codes||A window for adding or modifying code assignments.|
|Estimated Complete||A user-entered estimate of work completed.|
The Dates tab is where date-related settings are changed.
|Calendar||The schedule that work on the event can take place. For more info, see Project Calendars.|
|Date/Time||The date and/or time the event starts or finishes (depending on the type). The date can be made actual by clicking Actualize, but only if a Data Date has been set. For more info, see see Data Dates.|
|Start no earlier than/Finish no earlier than*||*Only available for milestones. An optional boundary preventing the event from starting/finish any earlier than the date selected. For more details, see step 1 of Constraining Milestones.|
|Start no later than/Finish no later than*||*Only available for milestones. An optional boundary preventing the event from starting/finish any later than the date selected. For more details, see step 1 of Constraining Milestones.|
|Contract Date||The date of the event according to a contract.|
|Change Log (Contract Date)||A history of changes to the contract date, with the following columns – Description: a text field for naming the version of the contract date. Contract Date: the date of the version of the contract date. Variance: the difference between the planned date on the canvas and the version of the contract date. Date Logged: the date/time the version of the contract date was modified. Associated Target: the most recent target created after the version of the contract date was modified. Associated Data Date: the most recent data date that existed on the canvas at the time the version of the contract date was modified.|
The Displays tab contains checkboxes for hiding or showing different fields on the canvas.
|Description||The description of the milestone/benchmark. Only one of the description fields can be displayed at any given time.|
|Abbr. Description||A shorter description for viewing on the canvas if the description is too long.|
|ID||A user-entered unique identifier. If no description field is displayed but the ID is, then the ID will inherit the formatting of the abbreviated description.|
|Est. Complete||A user-entered estimate of work completed.|
|Date||The date the event starts or finishes|
|Time||The time the event starts or finishes; only enabled if the schedule time unit is smaller than days.|
|Contract Shadow||A visual depiction of the most recent contract date, if any, that was entered.|
|Drift Buffer*||*Only available for milestones. The amount of time a milestone can gain before advancing the finish of its nearest predecessor.|
|Drift*||*Only available for milestones. The amount of time a milestone can gain before advancing the start of the project.|
|Float*||*Only available for milestones. The amount of time a milestone can be delayed before delaying the completion of the project.|
|Buffer*||*Only available for milestones. The amount of time a milestone can be delayed before delaying the start of its nearest successor.|
|Total Float*||*Only available for milestones. Drift + Float.|
NOTE: Drift, float, buffer, and total float are displayed in that order below the milestone on the same line. They may be distinguished from one another by the shape of their bounding boxes: drift points to the left, or project start; float and buffer point to the right, or project completion; and total float points in both directions. Either buffer or total float may be displayed, but not both at the same time. To customize the position of the fields on the canvas, see Repositioning Fields (GEM).
The Format tab contains controls for changing the look of the object on the canvas.
|Size||The size of the event on the canvas.|
|Shape||The shape of the event. A start event will be filled in on the left (or point to the left if it’s a flag); a finish event will be filled in on the right (or point to the right if it’s a flag). NOTE: Any pattern in-use by a milestone will be unavailable for use by a benchmark, and vice-versa.
|Color||The color of the event. NOTE: Avoid red for milestones, since red is used to signal criticality. For more info, see Criticality.|
|Text Location||The default position for the ID, description, and date/time|
|Tail Length (0-1)*||*Only available for milestones. An optional line extending from the bottom of the milestone down the canvas, with 0 being no line and 1 being to the bottom of the canvas.|
The description and the abbreviated description can be styled/formatted differently or the same. To make them different, choose Description from the dropdown, customize the options, and then choose Abbr. Description from the dropdown, and customize the options for it. The settings will be saved, and you can switch between the two to confirm.
To make them the same, choose Both from the dropdown, and then customize the options. Note that choosing both will only overwrite the options that receive a change. For example, imagine the description’s font has been formatted to Arial and the abbreviated description’s font has been formatted to Tahoma. If Both is chosen from the dropdown and the font is set to Calibri, then the font for both the description and the abbreviated description will be set to Calibri, but the color, alignment, style, and size will be unaffected, since they didn’t receive any change. This can be confirmed by switching between the description and the abbreviated description and reviewing them without losing any of the changes.
|Font||The font for the description, abbreviated description, or both.|
|Color||The color of the description, abbreviated description, or both.|
|Alignment||The alignment of the description, abbreviated description, or both.|
|Style||The style of the description, abbreviated description, or both.|
|Size||The size of the description, abbreviated description, or both.|