Many a time, I wished I had a utility that would read my projects mpp File and automatically alerted me about my tasks. Had created such a utilitly and this post desribes the process of reading MS Project Files in Java using MPXJ and Apache POI library.
MPXJ – MPXJ is the java library used for parsing MS Project files. The lib depends upon Apache POI package for providing the functionality. MPXJ supports all the three formats for MS Project. The details can be found at the Home Page for MPXJ provided in references section
Let’s start implementing. The code to read the File is fairly simple.
To read an MS Project file, we use projectReaderUtility class to get the instance of a ProjectReader, based on the extension. ProjectReader is the interface implemented by the classes that can read an MS Project file in mpxj library. Once we get the instance of ProjectReader, we need to invoke read API, passing the file name to be read. The API returns an instance of ProjectFile, containing all the details in the MS Project File.
More about ProjectFile – ProjectFile is the class in mpxj, which contains all the information about an MS Project file. It has API’s to access all Task details, as well other API’s to extract and manipulate other metadata.
Is that it? The basic objective of reading is done. Now we can use the provided API to iterate and create applications to suite our needs. For example, to list all the tasks, use getAllTasks(), it returns a List of Tasks. Custom logic can be applied to manipulate this list as desired, like filtering the tasks based on resources or date.
I am working on the prototype to read the MS Project File and update the Google Calendar with Task details, based on Start Date.