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What Is a Baseline?

A baseline is a snapshot of several task fields in time. These snapshots can be used to compare the current state of the project and what the state was when the baseline was saved. Views can be created to draw different bars for the different baseline start and finish dates so you can visually compare how tasks finished in comparison to the baseline. Typically, a baseline is saved just prior to the project starting so that it represents the planned state as it was just as the project was getting underway. A baseline includes the state of the Cost, Start, Finish, Duration, and Work fields. These fields are saved at both the task level and at the assignment level. At the resource level, a baseline contains the Cost, Work, Start, and Finish fields. The image seen here shows the Tracking Gantt view after a baseline has been saved and after several tasks have slipped to start later than planned.

The dark bars represent the baseline for each task.

The blue and red bars show the current state of the task.

Task 1 is the only task that did not slip. You can see this because it is the only task with the colored bar in the same position as its dark baseline bar.

Task 4 slipped one day and in turn pushed its successor tasks out one day each as well.

Task 9 slipped two days.


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