Layout dialog box

Use the Layout dialog box to review or change how the Network Diagram boxes are laid out on the screen. You can:

  • Define how boxes are to be arranged across the screen.

  • Specify the alignment, spacing, height, and width of the rows and columns.

  • Set options for link style and color.

  • Choose the Network Diagram background color and pattern.

Dialog box location

Display the Network Diagram view. On the Format menu, click Layout.

Details

Layout Mode section

Automatically position all boxes     Specifies that Network Diagram boxes are positioned automatically and locked into place. This is the default option.

Allow manual box positioning     Specifies that Network Diagram boxes can be positioned manually. When this option is set, you can point to an edge of a box and drag it to another position on the screen.

Box Layout section

Arrangement     Specifies the arrangement of the Network Diagram boxes on the Network Diagram. Click the arrow to choose from the list of arrangement options, for example, Top Down by Day or Centered from Top.

Box arrangement choices

Top Down From Left     Arranges the Network Diagram so that the first series of linked tasks (or path) begins in the upper-left corner, and each new path begins a new row down from there. Each path runs horizontally across the Network Diagram. This is the default arrangement.

Top Down by Day     Arranges the Network Diagram so that the first path begins in the upper-left corner, and all tasks that start on the same day are aligned vertically, with the days running horizontally across the view. This is useful when you want the Network Diagram to show all tasks due to start on a given day.

Top Down by Week     Arranges the Network Diagram so that the first path begins in the upper-left corner, and all tasks that start the same week are aligned vertically, with the weeks running horizontally across the view. This is useful when you want the Network Diagram to show all tasks due to start in a given week.

Top Down by Month     Arranges the Network Diagram so that the first path begins in the upper-left corner, and all tasks that start the same month are aligned vertically, with the months running horizontally across the view. This is useful when you want the Network Diagram to show all tasks due to start in a given month.

Top Down - Critical First     Arranges the Network Diagram so that the first series of linked tasks beginning in the upper-left corner is the critical path. All other paths begin a new row down from the critical path. All paths run horizontally across the Network Diagram.

Centered from Left     Arranges the Network Diagram so that the first path begins in the upper-left corner and each new path begins a new row down from there. Each path runs horizontally across the Network Diagram.

Centered from Top     Arranges the Network Diagram so that the first path begins in the upper-left corner and all other paths begin a new column to the right. Each path runs vertically down the Network Diagram.

Row     Specifies the alignment, spacing, and height of the Network Diagram boxes within rows.

Row layout

Alignment     Specifies the alignment of the Network Diagram boxes within rows.

Spacing     Specifies the spacing in pixels between rows of Network Diagram boxes. This number must be between 0 and 200.

Height     Specifies whether the row height of Network Diagram boxes is fixed or adjusts to the best fit.

Column     Specifies the alignment, spacing, and width of columns of Network Diagram boxes.

Column layout

Alignment     Specifies the alignment of Network Diagram boxes within columns.

Spacing     Specifies the spacing between columns of Network Diagram boxes. This number must be between 0 and 200.

Width     Specifies whether the column width of Network Diagram boxes is fixed or adjusts to the best fit.

Show summary tasks     Displays summary tasks in your project, for all views. This is the same setting as the Show summary tasks check box on the View tab of the Options dialog box (Tools menu). By default, this check box is selected.

Keep tasks with their summaries     Gives precedence to keeping tasks with their summary tasks over predecessors and successors on the layout of the Network Diagram. By default, this check box is selected.

Adjust for page breaks     Moves Network Diagram boxes so that they don't cross page breaks. By default, this check box is selected.

Link style section

Use this section to specify the style of dependency lines in the Network Diagram view.

Rectilinear     Shows dependency lines as right-angled lines between Network Diagram boxes. Dependency links always enter on the left side of a Network Diagram box and exit on the right side. This is the default option.

Straight     Shows dependency lines as straight lines between Network Diagram boxes.

Show arrows     Displays arrows at the end of each dependency line, pointing from the predecessor task to the successor. Clear the check box to hide arrows. By default, this check box is selected.

Show link labels     Displays labels indicating the link type (for example, FS or FF) on link lines between Network Diagram boxes. By default, this check box is cleared.

Link color section

Use this section to specify the color of link lines in the Network Diagram view. By default, critical and noncritical tasks have different colored link lines.

Noncritical links     Specifies the color of noncritical link lines on the Network Diagram.

Critical links     Specifies the color of link lines between critical tasks on the Network Diagram.

Match predecessor box border     Specifies that link lines of all tasks have the same color as the border of the Network Diagram box for the predecessor task, rather than different colors for critical and noncritical links.

Diagram Options section

Background color     Specifies the color for the background of the Network Diagram. By default, the background color is white.

Background pattern     Specifies the fill pattern for the background of the Network Diagram.

Show page breaks     Shows where page breaks would appear if you were to print the Network Diagram view. Clear the check box to hide page breaks. By default, this check box is cleared.

Mark in-progress and completed     Specifies that in-progress and completed tasks are marked on the Network Diagram. An in-progress task is marked with a single diagonal line through the box. A completed task is marked with two diagonal lines through the box (an X). By default, this check box is selected.

Hide all fields except ID     Displays only the task ID numbers in Network Diagram boxes. This might be useful if you want to see more of the Network Diagram in a smaller area. By default, this check box is cleared.

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