Project 2010: To save or not to save – saving and undo

In Microsoft Project, both 2007 and 2010, we have multi level undo.  One way this is used by many customers is for what-if work – change things around and see what affect this has on the schedule – then use multi-level undo to get back to the starting scenario.  If you use it in this way then there is another feature of Project you should know about – and avoid:  Auto-Save.  The behavior of undo, auto-save and save is different in Project than other Microsoft applications.  Project clears the undo buffer on save and this is one reason that auto-save is not turned on by default..  If you turn it on then you need to be aware that if the auto-save kicks in then you could lose the opportunity to undo changes.  Some customers like this feature in other Office applications, and use a Group Policy to ensure this is set for all users – and all applications.  This can catch users out who might want to use the multi-level undo as a what-if tool – and if so then you would not want to force this option down to your Project users.  And before you ask – this isn’t a bug – it is just the way Project works.

Comments (4)

  1. m says:

    Clearing the undo buffer after save is an absolutely horrible idea that is anti-pattern to the way undo works almost everywhere else.  The person who developed that feature should be fired.  The UX team that allowed this should also be fired.

  2. m says:

    also, it's probably not your fault Brian, but just a little venting.

  3. No problem m, and Project does have a few more challenges when it comes to undo than some of the other Office applications.  And I think firing is a bit harsh – I guess it was a trade of with other features, but glad we do have some level of undo (we came late to the game).

    Best regards,


  4. Walter Dajee says:

    Hi Brian,
    Thank you for the explanation. I have been working off a project file, and kept saving (not AutoSave) it as a different version e.g. Filename.V00-001/2/3 etc. When I got to V00.21 and did an undo, my file got corrupted. Tasked were shuffled and sequencing was gone. I checked all the other versions they were in the same state as the corrupt file, so I have nothing to recover from.

    I will now look at whether I have autosave on, but it should not matter in my case because I would expect that if I opened an older/prev version, the changes should at least be in there?

    Thank you for your time

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