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Data Type    Date

Entry Type    Calculated

Description    The Early Start field contains the earliest date that a task could possibly begin, based on the early start dates of predecessor and successor tasks and other constraints.

How Calculated    When you first create a task, its early start date is the same as the scheduled start date. As you link the task to predecessors and successors and apply any other constraints, Project calculates the early start date as the earliest possible date this task could be started if all predecessor and successor tasks also start on their early start dates. These calculations are based on a fixed task duration. If there is a leveling delay on the task, this delay is also figured into the early start date.

Best Uses    Add the Early Start field to a task view, along with the Early Finish, Late Start, and Late Finish fields, to analyze slack time in your schedule.

Example    Several critical tasks are slipping and likely to cause the entire project to be severely delayed. You add the Early Start, Early Finish, Late Start, and Late Finish fields to the Task Sheet view in order to analyze the delays and find any available slack time.

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