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Microsoft Project monthly patches impact with Clarity

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Article ID: 11553

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Updated On:

Products

Clarity PPM On Premise Clarity PPM SaaS

Issue/Introduction

How do Microsoft Project (MSP) monthly patches impact Clarity?

Environment

Release: All Supported Releases
Component: Clarity Microsoft Project (MSP) Integration

Resolution

For each respective version of Clarity, we test and certify specific Versions/Releases and Updates of Microsoft Project that will integrate with our product, as noted in the Compatibilities section of the Release Notes (which can be accessed at: https://techdocs.broadcom.com)

Beginning in 2015, Microsoft started pushing out regular updates for its Office Suite and MS Project. We have found that some of the code changes that were pushed out in early updates from years prior to 2018 can cause issues with the CA Clarity PPM integration. As a result,  it's recommended to be on the latest Microsoft Project update available if on the MSP New Driver version 14.4 or higher.

For Microsoft Project Updates pushed between our Product releases, beginning with Clarity version 14.4, we conduct standard regression testing to determine if said Microsoft Project Update will cause potential issues with the integration for the Clarity GA version available at that time. If there is an update we will not support due to the impacts it has on our Integration, we will document that here as well.

If an issue/defect is found during our testing, it is then reported back to Microsoft as a defect within Microsoft Project and then follows Microsoft’s 'rules' for fixing defects.

Microsoft Updates that are not supported

Based on our testing, the following are Microsoft Project Updates that have been determined to have impacts and cause adverse effects to the Clarity and Microsoft Project Integration.  These Updates should not be installed as we do not support their use due to these issues.  

  • Microsoft March 2015 Update: Causes project name to be changed to its internal project id when saved back to Clarity
  • Microsoft November 2015 Update: Causes tasks exported with 1 or 0 day duration, resource allocation changes to 0%; task may export as 100% complete
  • Microsoft December 2015 Update: Causes projects with assignments to hang or crash when exporting to MSP (reported to Microsoft)
  • *Microsoft February 2016 Update: Fixes previously reported issues, however Actuals & ETC may be impacted due to a Microsoft code change. This Security Update is supported (in the MSP New Driver only) starting in Clarity 14.4. 
  • Microsoft November 2016 Update: Causes Remaining Work (Referred as ETC in Clarity) to be removed on export to MSP

* The February 2016 Update is supported in Clarity 14.4 and higher.

NOTE: all of the adverse effects that impact the Clarity / MSP integration have been resolved through cooperation between Clarity Engineering and Microsoft; applying the latest Microsoft Update (e.g April 2018 will effectively resolve the impacts caused by the problem updates listed above, which must be uninstalled.) 


Microsoft Updates supported in 14.4 MSP New Driver and higher

The below updates have been found to have no issues in Clarity 14.4 and higher MSP New Driver based on our testing. Note that no security updates are supported with the MSP Legacy Driver.

It's recommended to be on the latest supported update listed below, as there have been multiple defects fixed in the later updates. Microsoft updates are cumulative, so fixes in previous updates are included in the latest update. 

  • Microsoft February 2016 Update: Fixes previously reported issues, however, Actuals & ETC may be impacted due to a Microsoft code change in versions lower than Clarity 14.4. This Security Update is supported (in the MSP New Driver) in Clarity 14.4 and higher MSP New Driver. 
  • Microsoft May 2016 and July 2016 Updates: No issues found in Clarity 14.4 and higher MSP New Driver in our testing.
  • Microsoft October 2016 Update: No issues found in Clarity and higher MSP New Driver in our testing. This includes the fixes for two issues:
    • An unexpected increase duration on a fixed duration task type.
    • A completed task finish date may show as the end of the week.
  • Microsoft December 2016 through July 2017 updates: For the 14.4. MSP New Driver and higher, no issues found in our testing.
  • All updates starting in September 2017 and higher: For the 14.4. MSP New Driver and higher, all updates starting September 2017 and higher are supported, though it's recommended to be on the latest supported update.

Latest Certified Updates

We will continue to test and certify MSP Updates. The latest certified MSP Updates are listed below for MSP2019 and MSP2016:

MSP 2019

See builds referenced at docs.microsoft.com at: Update history for Office 2016 C2R and Office 2019)

  • August 25, 2021 Version 2108 (Build 16.0.14326.20238) is the latest version certified

MSP 2016

Notes: 

  • Fixes may vary based on Microsoft Version, so be sure to check the link for your specific version of Microsoft Project. ‚ÄčTo find out which update is installed on any given workstation:
    1. Go to: Control Panel > Uninstall a Program > View Installed Updates
    2. Sort by the Program column 
    3. You should then look for the highest KB number in the section for Microsoft Project
    4. Using Google or another search engine, search based on the KB number to see for which month the update applies
  • Additionally, we encourage all customers to fully test a newly released Microsoft Project Update before applying the Update to ensure there are no issues based on your usage of the products and integration.  If in your testing you find an issue not documented above, please log a case with Clarity Support. We can then work with you and log a case with Microsoft to address any potential Microsoft Project defects caused as a result of the Update.
  • If you do find an issue or have installed one of the aforementioned Microsoft Project Updates, our recommendation is to remove problematic Microsoft Project Updates.

Additional Information