10.2 Desktop tools

Microsoft Project 2013

  • http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/project-help/what-s-new-in-project-2013-HA102749523.aspx
  • First release date: 2000

  • License: Multiple types, closed source code

  • Evaluation

    • Well known UI of Microsoft Office Tools

    • Complex software: easy to learn basic functionality, hard to master all features

    • Default: one user; project server is needed for collaboration

      • Team collaboration with Project Server and Microsoft Lync (communication platform with email, chat, etc.)

    • Wide set of reports: burn-down chart, cost overview, cash-flow, etc. Charts can be modified with the same methods as in Excel

The most feature rich project management tool for a single user. Standard Microsoft UI enables Office users for a faster learning curve, though due to its extensive functionality it is hard to master. It has a high license cost. Capable to manage Agile though it is focusing on Waterfall type projects.


 Figure 10.1: Microsoft Project – main view


Main UI:

  • Default view: task view/Gantt

    • Change from tasks to resources view

    • Customization available: choose shown meta values per a task

    • Tasks can be grouped to custom amount of hierarchies

    • Critical paths can be managed

  • Resource view: task view/resource sheet

    • Add resources with name, type, materials, group, max units, standard rate, overtime rate, cost/use, base calendar, …

    • Resource can be assigned to tasks

  • Scheduling

    • Managing relationships, automatic modifications on dependencies

    • Warnings if one resource is utilized more than 100%


  • https://wiki.gnome.org/action/show/Apps/Planner?action=show&redirect=Planner
  • First release date: 2005

  • License: GNU-GPL open-source – free to modify, all modifications are to be published for the client/buyer that the modification was made to

  • Evaluation

    • Desktop application for planning

    • No multi-user environment

    • Gantt-based planning with milestones, task start and finish dates, needed work hours spent on them and costs.

    • Resource allocations for tasks

    • Handling task dependencies

    • Resource usage view to maximize resource efficiency

    • HTML based report exporting


A lightweight but fully functional cross-platform, single user software making project planning easier. Well fit for sequential, waterfall projects.

Main UI

  • Gantt view: add tasks and subtasks with deadlines, resources, dependencies

  • Task view: list of tasks

  • Resources: manage project resources

  • Resource usage: resource load view


Figure 10.2.1: Planner – Gantt view of simple Desktop tool evaluation project



Figure 10.2.2: Planner – Resource utilization chart within project Gantt


Figure 10.2.3: Planner – Task list view