Project Online: Why might my site go read-only?


We are rolling out a change currently that could set some PWA sites to read-only – so I thought it worth mentioning 3 reasons why you might see a PWA site go into a read only mode – which would show as a yellow banner on the PWA pages.  I’ll start with the most recent change.

We have seen a number of customers open cases where their Project Online PWA site appeared to just go away.  Closer examination showed that the customer did not have either a Project Online Professional or Premium license – but just some Project Online Essentials licenses.  I blogged about this combination a while ago.  Normally when a license expires then the site will go into a read only state 30 days later – then after a further 90 days the site will be de-provisioned.  The  challenge here was that there were still valid licenses (the Project Essentials ones) and the sites were not showing as read-only – but would still finally get de-provisioned.  The tenant and billing administrators would receive e-mails warning of the pending de-provision but it appears these where ignored in some cases.  The change means that any sites where the only valid license is Project Essentials will now go to read-only after 30 days (or immediately if the Project Online Professional or Premium licenses expired more than 30 days ago).  Many of the customers who have had this issue appear to be from the Education sector – and it seems to coincide with the change in offering where earlier the EDU customers had a free option for Project Online – but now have a reduced price offering – and some renewed with the cheapest license available and did not choose any Professional or Premium licenses.  I should remind everyone that not only do you require at least one Project Online Professional or Premium license to keep your PWA alive – but you also need these licenses to perform administrative and other regular tasks that many of you users might need to do – so please ensure you are correctly licensed.  See https://products.office.com/en-us/project/compare-microsoft-project-management-software?tab=1 for details of the different licenses and their features.

The 2nd reason you might go into a read-only state is if you are over your assigned quota.  I’ll be following up with another blog that goes into more details here and offers some ways to ensure you are not using more data than you need to – and to avoid the risk of hitting your quota – and I’ll add a link here when that posting is live.

The 3rd is usually a very temporary condition that can occur during maintenance.  Most maintenance is not even noticed by our customers and you will not often see this – but if for example we are failing over a SQL Server or migrating a tenant for load balancing our server farms there can be times when short periods of read-only are experienced.

And the 4th?  Just in case you came here from my click-bait headline?  If the planet runs out of 0’s and 1’s then I guess PWA would go read-only.  I said you wouldn't believe it!


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