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Monday, July 18, 2011

Create/Manage Issue/Risk List Centrally using Content Type - Part 1

This is sort of a refresher blog, posted originally sometime back by fellow consultant and Project MVP Andrew Lavinsky and which you can find it here. In this blog i will define the Content type and its uses in two parts, that is how to manage the Project site metadata centrally. And how to hide the default not required columns from the Issue/Risk forms without breaking the sync, since you might already aware that the out of the box fields of Risk/Issue list cannot be removed/changed else you will end up with a mess.

So in this first part, i will define how to create/manage centrally Issue and Risk list metadata using Content types. And this procedure is applicable to both versions, i.e. Project Server 2007 and Project Server 2010.

You can define Content types to organize, manage, and handle content in a consistent way across a site collection within a Sharepoint farm. So basically you can create a content type for Issue or Risk list, and can control the list metadata from a central interface, any changes i will do can be trickle down to the existing or the newly created Project Sites. Changes in the Issue/Risk list could be quite often and this can save the life of poor system administrator as the administrator don't have to do the changes in every project site, he can manage the changes from the central location. 

Next i will create list content type for Project Site Issues list, and will walk you through the steps to define and manage the content type. Please be aware that in a similar fashion, content type can be created for Risk, project documents etc. etc. 

1. Create content type on the top level site in site collection, i.e. PWA. Go to Site Settings, Under the section galleries click Site Content Type:

2. Select create button:

3. Name the content type as Project Issue, select the type as List content type and i prefer to categorize the content types in their relevant group to make it easier to find later:

4. This will redirect you to the configuration page, from here you can create all the required data:

5. I will create Issue Number field for demonstration purposes only:

The content type for Issue list is created, ideally i should incorporate this content type to the Project site template but for the demonstration purposes i will just add this to one of my existing project site.

6. Open the Project Site, click on Issues lists and select list settings:

7. From there, select Advanced Settings:

8. Set the list to allow the Management of Content Type:

 9. After the changes are applied, you will be back to the settings page where you can see that Project Issue content type is already deployed:

10. From here, add new content type:

11. Once done, you can now set the newly added content type as the default one to be used. You can also keep more than one Issue tracking list based on different methodology from here:

12. You can now add all the list columns to this new content type. Go to the list settings, and click on the new Project Issue content type:

13. Select from the available columns box and add them all:

That's it, we are all done and set to use our centrally created content type Project Issue list. To verify this, create new Issue by clicking on Add new item:

And you must see on the form the column i have created, it automatically picks up any column you create in future and saves you the hassle of adding new column while browsing to the every project site. 

In my next post i will show the steps to achieve one of the most received request from the clients, that is to hide some of the default columns from the form. You might already aware that we cannot simply delete/modify the default Issue/Risk columns in order to remove them from the form, as it will break the synchronization. But the good news is that you can hide those not required default columns from the form without deleting them, yes you heard it rite without delete :). And that you can only do if you use the content type. 

Any comments/appreciation is widely welcome as usual.


do you have any idea if those new columns are available in the reporting database?

Is there anyway to add a calculation site column with the default risk and issue fields? Example. I may want to have a risk score based off of the probability and impact values.

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