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What’s New with the Latest Release 18.8 of Oracle Primavera EPPM P6 Web Access and Professional

In 2016, Oracle announced a planned depreciation of Java based plugin applets. One factor for this decision was because most of the major internet web browser vendors wanted to reduce the upkeep of plugin support in their products. They eventually wanted to remove the ability to embed Flash, Silverlight, Java and other plugin-based programs in their web browsers.  Around 2010, P6 Web Access release 8.x was launched and was originally entirely designed as a Java based program. So how does the phasing out of Java support in web browsers affect Oracle Primavera P6 Web Access?

In August of 2018, Oracle released Primavera P6 18.8. This latest release of Primavera P6 Web Access has officially disabled all of the remaining Java applets in the software.

How does this affect Primavera P6 Web Access?

Over the last several years, the P6 developers have been gradually re-writing and converting the existing Java based portions of P6 Web Access to HTML5. Hypertext Markup Language, is a standardized programming language used to deliver content in web browsers. HTML5 makes additional plugins like Java and Flash unnecessary to run content like animations, apps and videos in your internet browser.

In Primavera P6 versions 15, 16 and 17, there was an increasing transition to remove Java. The P6 developers gradually replaced the various screens and functions in P6 Web Access with HTML5 counterparts. In all of these versions of P6, the EPS (Enterprise Project Sturcture) and Activities pages had an option to revert back to the “Classic” Java based view of the original P6 release 8.x Web Access. Therefore, P6 Users had an option to use the traditional screens to create and manage their projects. 

If you are curious to view the Java based screens of P6 Web Access 8.x, you can see them in my article here:

Side-by-side Comparison of P6 Professional and P6 Web Access

What are the changes in P6 Web Access 18.x?  

In this newest version of Primavera all of the remaining Java applets are completely removed. Oracle states they do not have any plans to re-write or replace their functionality.

Features removed in P6 Web Access are:

  • Classic Java view from the EPS, Activity and Resource Assignments pages are removed
  • In the Dashboards section:
    • Resource Team Summary
    • Open Request for Resource
    • Resource Analysis Chart – replaced with improved charts in Resources and Resource Analysis
    • My Workgroups
  • In the Portfolios section:
    • Portfolio Gantt Chart
    • ROI
  • Project Workspaces
  • Resource Planning

Some of the enhancements Added in P6 Web Access 18.x (compared to version 8.x) are:

  • Equivalent versions of HTML5 pages for:
    • Dashboards – Including Project Gantt and Scorecards
    • Portfolios – Portfolio Analysis, Portfolio Views (includes Pie Charts, Histograms, Bubble Charts, and Scorecards), Portfolio Capacity Planning, and Portfolio Performance Status.
    • Resource Analysis
    • Risks
    • Issues
  • Progress Spotlight added to the Activities page.
  • Ability to change the duration, start or finish date of an activity directly on the Gantt Chart. If you drag or change the position of the activity, then a prompt to add a Start on or After Constraint will show.
  • Ability to export or import the layout views in the EPS or Activities pages.
  • Assign views to multiple users.
  • Link or unlink groups of activity relationships with the right-click menu options.
  • Ability to assign relationships by drawing or dragging the connection between the Gantt Chart activity bars.
  • Capability to assign project preferences at the EPS level. Project Preferences and defaults can be set for all the projects in the EPS node at the same time. Previously, Project Preferences could only be set for individual projects at a time.
  • Import and Export Excel files on the EPS page.
  • Ability to Save to PDF on several pages including the EPS and Activity pages.

You can also view an Oracle video demonstration of the newer HTML5 pages here:

Enhancements in P6 Professional 18.x

  • Addition of an Image Manager. Images and graphics can be uploaded to the P6 database to allow anyone to view and print the image for reports from any location or computer. The Images are restricted to be no more than 500×500 pixels.
P6 Professional - Images Manager
  • Addition of a Performance % Complete – Labor Units field. This Column shows the percentage of earned value of the budget at completion as calculated from labor units.
    • Calculated as Earned Value Labor Units divided by Budget at Complete Labor Units multiplied by 100%.
Performance Percent Complete - Labor Units

Summary

This latest release of Oracle Primavera P6 version 18.8 has some significant changes with the P6 Web Access platform. Oracle has exchanged most of the Java based applets with an HTML5 counterpart.  I anticipate that they will continue to keep adding functionality from the P6 Professional version of their scheduling software. If you or your company currently use P6 Web Access as your main scheduling program, then I suggest you should consider upgrading to this latest version.

For a more detailed list of enhancements, you can review the Oracle’s documentation on P6 release 18.8 here:

Oracle Document – Whats New in P6 EPPM – PDF


How to tell Which Primavera P6 Professional Projects that Users Have Open

Written on October 4, 2018. By Tracy Mah

Have you ever wondered who else in your company has your project open while you are working on it? Oracle Primavera P6 Professional has a built-in feature that allows people to tell what projects are currently opened by others in their company.

How to View the Project Users Dialog Box

To access this feature, simply go to the Menu bar at the top of the Primavera P6 Professional screen and select File then Open. This opens the Open Project Dialog box. You have the option to select a specific project or any of the Enterprise Project Structure (EPS) node bands. When you select an EPS band, it will report on all the projects that fall under that node. Lastly, click the Users button.

In the example image below, the top EPS node is selected which will view any User who has a project open in the entire database of projects.

A Project Users dialog box will pop-up and show which project each person has open. The list in the Project Users dialog box only show the projects that are currently opened. It does not show a historical record of everyone who has opened each project in the past. 

Project Users Dialog Box

The Problem

Unfortunately, in older versions of Primavera this feature did not work consistently. Often, whenever someone tried to access this feature it would cause a “CF-0649-F Catastrophic Error” or some kind of “Application Event Code Error”. As a result, the program would unexpectedly close and Users would have to restart Primavera P6 Professional.

Event Code Catastrophic Error CF-0649-F

The Solution

In 2017, I had an opportunity to work with a company that was upgrading from Primavera P6 Version 7 to Release 16.1. I managed a Service Request Ticket for Oracle Support to fix the Catastrophic Error bug. Oracle Support then resolved and fixed the bug in Primavera P6 Versions 16.2.10.0 and 17.10 Patch Set. After extensive testing, I was not able to reproduce the bug once the company had patched their P6 version. Oracle mentions the fix is also included in any subsequent newer versions of Primavera.

Summary

Primavera P6 Professional has a useful built-in feature that allows P6 Users to identify and view who has projects opened. Unfortunately, in older versions of Primavera this feature did not always work. If you are experiencing an error when trying the Users feature, then I suggest upgrading P6 to a newer version. If you are not sure which version of P6 you are using, you can easily check by going to the Menu bar, select Help, then About. The version or release number will be listed in the About screen.

Need help purchasing a new license of Primavera P6?

How to Purchase Oracle Primavera P6 License

This article has detailed instructions on how to buy a license directly from the online Oracle Shop. 

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