Task Name Text Disappeared

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Most of the task names have disappeared from our sheets. It appears to be happening in all of our project schedule sheets. Can anybody explain what happened here and how to fix it? Thanks.


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Answers

  • Kelly Moore
    Kelly Moore ✭✭✭✭✭✭
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    Hey @Jeff Wigen

    Have you checked to see if conditional formatting is set to white text?

  • Jeff Wigen
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    Thanks for the suggestion. Looking at the Activity Log shows that conditional formatting was applied to set the cells in question to Blank; nothing about font color.. Unfortunately, the Log doesn't show the details of the formatting rule that was applied. And a formatting rule that would generate a blank cell or white text does not appear on any of the sheets in question.

    Also, it shows that the conditional formatting rule was applied to 5 project schedule sheets at the exact same time. I didn't even think it was possible to apply a rule across multiple sheets at the same time. And it applied the conditional formatting to sheets that the person who allegedly made the change doesn't use.

  • Kelly Moore
    Kelly Moore ✭✭✭✭✭✭
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    Hey Jeff

    Are the sheets part of a control center blueprint? It sounds like it...

  • Jeff Wigen
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    Hi Kelly -

    We have not used blueprints. It's been over 18 months since these sheets were developed, so my details are a bit fuzzy. But we may have created the first one, then used it as a template to create the others. But, that sounds different than a blueprint.

    The activity log shows that the conditional formatting was applied to the sheet on 1-4-22. The user that shows up in the log as applying the conditional formatting on 1-4-22 confirmed that the sheets that they use looked normal after 1-4-22, until the issue was discovered on 1-21-22.

  • Kelly Moore
    Kelly Moore ✭✭✭✭✭✭
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    Check your automation to make sure you don't have a "Change Cell Value" or "Clear Cell Value" automation running. This could do it. Are the blank cells continuing, or were they a one-time event?

    Do you use the premier app Data Mesh to update your sheets?

    Kelly

  • Jeff Wigen
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    The only automations on any of the sheets are sending notifications if rows are added or changed. Nothing to change or clear the cell values. We do not use Data Mesh to update sheets.

    This issue only affects 6 project schedule worksheets that are in one workspace. None of our other workspaces, some of which include project schedule worksheets, have been impacted.

  • Kelly Moore
    Kelly Moore ✭✭✭✭✭✭
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    Hey Jeff

    Just for grins, what about if you create a helper column (just for a quick test) that mirrors the Task Name column

    =[Task Name]@row

    Is it also blank?@rowan.bradley

  • Jeff Wigen
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    I was able to do that. For the few rows that do have text in the Task Name column, the helper column mirrored the text. But for the blank cells, the cells in the helper column are also blank.

    It's not just Task Name cells that were changed to blank; it's also cells in the Assigned To column. The strange part is that the cells were changed at the exact same time (within 1-2 seconds) in all 6 sheets that are affected. And the user that is indicated as making the change says that they didn't make the change.

    Here is a snippet of the Activity Log that shows conditional formatting changed, conditional formatting applied, and a portion of the list of cells that were changed. There were 204 cells changed. The date stamp is 1-4-2022 at 9:27:14 AM.


  • Andrée Starå
    Andrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭✭
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    Hi @Jeff Wigen

    I hope you're well and safe!

    To add to Kelly's excellent advice/answer.

    Can you maybe share some screenshots of the Conditional Formatting window? (Delete/replace any confidential/sensitive information before sharing) That would make it easier to help.

    I hope that helps!

    Be safe and have a fantastic week!

    Best,

    Andrée Starå | Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

    Did my post(s) help or answer your question or solve your problem? Please support the Community by marking it Insightful/Vote Up or/and as the accepted answer. It will make it easier for others to find a solution or help to answer!

    SMARTSHEET EXPERT CONSULTANT & PARTNER

    Andrée Starå | Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

    W: www.workbold.com | E:andree@workbold.com | P: +46 (0) - 72 - 510 99 35

    Feel free to contact me for help with Smartsheet, integrations, general workflow advice, or anything else.

  • Kelly Moore
    Kelly Moore ✭✭✭✭✭✭
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    In addition to the screenshot of your conditional formatting rules - can you describe the data flow into your sheet? Are you manually inputting Task Name on all 6 sheets? How are you keeping the Parent-Child hierarchy? Are you creating new rows, or just updating/overwriting existing rows? Are the 6 sheets somehow linked to one another or are they all independent?

    Are you able to correct the blank cells manually?

  • Jeff Wigen
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    A screenshot of the conditional formatting rules for one sheet is below. The rules for the other sheets are virtually the same.

    We believe we have a fairly simple Smartsheet setup. Yes, we manually input task names into the sheets. We initially attempted to convert from MS Project, but it didn't convert well. I'm not sure what you mean by Parent-Child hierarchy. We insert new rows when new project tasks are added. Row updates are pretty much confined to changing start/finish dates for tasks. Each sheet is independent. We have some reports that utilize data from multiple sheets. Yes, we are able to correct the blank cells manually.


  • Kelly Moore
    Kelly Moore ✭✭✭✭✭✭
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    Hey Jeff

    This is the last thing I can think of without having access to the sheet. If you hover over the blank cells - they don't indicate they have a formula in them, do they?

    Kelly

  • Andrée Starå
    Andrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭✭
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    @Jeff Wigen

    Thanks!

    What happens if you make a copy of one of the sheets?

    SMARTSHEET EXPERT CONSULTANT & PARTNER

    Andrée Starå | Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

    W: www.workbold.com | E:andree@workbold.com | P: +46 (0) - 72 - 510 99 35

    Feel free to contact me for help with Smartsheet, integrations, general workflow advice, or anything else.

  • Jeff Wigen
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    Two answer the last couple of questions and help wrap up this thread, I have 2 answers and 1 question.

    1. When I hover over the blank cells, they do not show any formulas.
    2. When I make a copy of the sheets, the copied sheets look identical to the original, with the blank cells.

    I am restoring the 6 affected sheets from backups. Fortunately we have automatic backups and those sheets are easy to restore.

    My question is what is the best way to reconnect the restored sheets to the reports that reference those sheets?

  • Kelly Moore
    Kelly Moore ✭✭✭✭✭✭
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    @Genevieve P.

    @Jeff Wigen needs some guidance on report restoration following sheet backups. Here's his question from the post above:

    I am restoring the 6 affected sheets from backups. Fortunately we have automatic backups and those sheets are easy to restore.

    My question is what is the best way to reconnect the restored sheets to the reports that reference those sheets

    I searched documentation and posts but I couldn't find an answer for him.

    Kelly