Conditional Formatting in Custom Field not printing

Occasional Contributor

I have a master project file with multiple subprojects. The formatting is set so that the Project Summary Tasks are blue with gray background. All works well except for the Overall Health column I recently added. I have tried everything but that cell will not format. It looks like it is formatted in the .mpp files but when you go to print, it is white and no gray fill. I have removed and reapplied all formatting in the master file to no avail. I have also tried directly in the project file too. The only thing I can think of is that it may have to do with my graphical indicator settings perhaps? I thought I only had the overall health settings applied to tasks but maybe I missed something!? I'm new to MS Project so I would appreciate any input from you seasoned veterans. I am using the desktop app. Thanks! Amanda













6 Replies


I think the issue you are dealing with is that the master does not actually contain subproject tasks, rather, the master only contains pointers to each subproject. You can readily see this by looking at the ID field. For those tasks that are in the master (i.e. subproject summary line insertion points) you will see one set of IDs, consecutive but spaced apart by subproject tasks. Within each subproject you will see the IDs in their normal consecutive sequence, assuming you have not applied a sort or filter.


The limited screen shot you show is a task with and ID of 1. I don't know if that is the summary line insertion point for the first subproject or if it is the first task of a subproject.


Can you get what you want? Yes, but it will take some steps to do so. First off, I'm not sure why but at master level setting the font and background colors for summary lines does not work except for summary line that are in a subproject. However, you can use the Marked field for set up formatting for all summary lines at master level, just add that field and set it to "yes" for all summary lines.


The next thing you need to do to get the graphical indicators to show as intended is to check the boxes to show indicators at summary level.


Hope this helps.


@John-project Thanks so much for replying. I have the formatting set in the master as well as the subprojects.


This image is a snapshot from my master file. Notice how the first cell under "overall health" is gray?



When I got to print, it looks like this image. This is what has me stumped. I've searched high and low and cannot figure it out. Could it possibly be the graphical indicators I have set up for the overall health column? 



Indeed graphical indicators will override cell background color. And, when you go to print, the formatting should appear as expected. Here is a screen shot of Print Preview on my test master file.



I guess I am going to have to play around with it. I do not want graphical indicators in my subproject line. I thought I had my graphical indicators settings correct but I will double check. For clarity, is it best to apply graphical indicators in your master file or in your project template file. Trying to learn best practices. I'll try & post a snap shot of my master showing the numbering. I can't seem to find the add photo icon now. lol


I don't quite understand your statement, "I do not want graphical indicators in my subproject line". What exactly do you mean by "subproject line"? Are you referring to the summary line insertion points in the master like I show in my screen shot? So where exactly do you, and do you not, want the graphical indicators to appear?


Where you apply graphical indicators is up to the user. It just becomes a little more challenging when working with a master file with inserted subprojects.


Before you get to comfortable with master/subproject structures in Project let me inform you of some rules. Never rename, move, overwrite, or save off to another location any of the files in the structure. Dynamic masters (master with inserted subprojects) in Project are prone to corruption. Violating the above will practically guarantee the structure will get corrupted. Also, it is best to keep all files in a single folder on a local drive and not operate over a network.