Show the critical path of your project

Every task is important, but only some of them are critical. The critical path is a chain of linked tasks that directly affects the project finish date. If any task on the critical path is late, the whole project is late.

  1. Click View > Gantt Chart.

  2. Click Format, and then select the Critical Tasks check box.

Critical Tasks check box on the ribbon and highlighted Gantt bars in Project 2013

Tasks on the critical path now have red Gantt bars.

Show the critical path in other task views

View the critical path in a master project

Change what tasks show up on the critical path

Show the critical path in other task views

You can see the critical path in any task view by highlighting it.

  1. Click the View tab, and then pick a view from the Task Views group.

  2. Staying on the View tab, select Critical from the Highlight list.
    The critical path shows up in yellow.

  3. To see only the tasks on the critical path, click the Filter arrow, then pick Critical.

Critical path highlight in Project 2013

Tip    In a Network Diagram, tasks on the critical path automatically show up in red. No highlighting is needed.

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View the critical path in a master project

When you’re managing a master project, whole subprojects can be on the critical path. You can see if this is true by telling Project to treat the subprojects like they are summary tasks.

  1. Click File > Options.

  2. Click Schedule and then scroll down to the Calculation options for this project area.

  3. Make sure the Inserted projects are calculated like summary tasks box is selected.

Tip    This setting does not affect other projects. That is, it only applies to the master project you’re working on.

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Change what tasks show up on the critical path

Typically, critical tasks have no slack. But you can tell Project to include tasks with one or more days of slack on the critical path so you can see potential problems coming from farther away.

  1. Click File > Options.

  2. Click Advanced, and then scroll down to the Calculation options for this project area.

  3. Add a number to the Tasks are critical if slack is less than or equal to box.

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Applies To: Project Professional 2013, Project Standard 2016 Preview, Project Professional 2016 Preview, Project Standard 2013



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