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Primavera P6

The History of Primavera – List of Primavera P6 Releases and Versions

A chart showing the timeline of the Primavera P6 versions releases

What is the Latest Version of Primavera P6?

The latest version of Primavera P6 Professional to date is the version 22.12, which was publicly released in January 2023.

The History of Primavera P6

Primavera P6 is one of the leading enterprise project management tools, used for planning and managing large-scale projects across different industry verticals such as Construction and Engineering, Oil, Gas and Energy and other.

The Primavera P6 software we know today was first created by a company called Eagle Ray Software System as an enterprise project management software solution. Consecutively, the famous XER file format in which we share the Primavera project data today, named after its file extension, stands as a shortcut for eXport Eagle Ray.

In 1999, the company got acquired by Primavera Systems and during the next two decades, the Primavera P6 software had grown to be one of the most widely used tools for planning of intensive construction and capital, mega projects.

After the acquisition of Eagle Ray Software System, the product was rebranded to Primavera TeamPlay with a primary focus on the IT & Software Development industry.

At that time, several variations from the product were also introduced on the market, the Primavera p3e, which was not exclusive for the IT industry and was used in other industry verticals as well, and a construction-focused version designated as P3e/c.

Hence the software was additionally known and informally referred to as P3, and then gradually renamed to “Primavera” (from Version 5 onwards) up until version 6, when it started to be referred as “P6”, which as an informal practice is still present to date.

In 2008, the company Primavera Systems was acquired by the Oracle corporation, who further developed the tool into the Primavera P6 project and portfolio management solution that we know today as part of their growing project ecosystem.

The earlier versions of P6 were called Primavera Project Manager, Primavera Project Management, and Primavera Enterprise.

Nowadays, several version of the Primavera P6 software exist, such as the Primavera P6 Professional and the Primavera P6 Enterprise Project Portfolio Management.

A detailed summary of the difference between the Primavera P6 on-premise and web version is available on the following link: P6 PPM vs P6 EPPM.

New updates and versions of the Primavera P6 Professional, on-premises version of the software are commonly reported to be released every year during the month of December, while users of the Primavera P6 web version benefit from more frequent updates throughout the year.

Since version 2015, major version updates are numbered according to the year of release, while minor updates according to the month of release.

Example: release 21.12 was released in December of 2021.

List of Past Primavera P6 Releases and Versions

Primavera P6 Version History

Version Release Date    
22.12 Jan 2023
21.12 Dec 2021
20.12 Dec 2020
19.12 Dec 2019
18.8 Aug 2018
17.12 Dec 2017
17.7 July 2017
16.2 Oct 2016
16.1 April 2016
15.2 2015
15.1 2015
8.4 2014
8.3 2013
8.2 2012
8.1 2011
7 2009
6.7 2009
6.2 2008
6.1 2007
5 2005

As the project planning and scheduling community continued to work on developing personnel and practices throughout the years, technology and tools have also evolved.

New versions are packed with new features and functionality to better support the requirements and work of schedulers. The work done in the Primavera P6 software produces an output referred to as the project schedule, which is available in several formats.

The .XER and .XML file extension are two of the most common and preferred ways to save and share the extensive schedule information, with the XER file format considered as the default, or practitioners and manufactures preferred format for import/export of data.

The two above-mentioned file extensions follow an open file format and can contain the entire or a large amount of information about the project.

The primary aim of the XER file format is to enable data to be transferred from one system Primavera P6 to another, recreating the projects within the file exactly as they are defined in the source system.

The XER file format was first introduced in the Primavera P6 application in the 2007 release.

Today there are several standalone applications, that can open and visualize the data within the project file in the .xer file format, without a requirement for the Primavera P6 system to be installed on the PC.

Communicating schedule data

Making the schedule information readily available to the project participants that need it can be a great challenge. This is especially true for large projects with multiple contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers. A significant effort is needed to coordinate not only the schedule development, updating, etc., but also in disseminating the output or the schedule to those who need to execute the work in practice.

With each company having its own workflows and procedures, today multiple ways to communicate the information from a Primavera P6 project plan exist.

Tools to facilitate efficient communication of schedule information in addition to Primavera P6

A great tool that can facilitate efficient communication on projects is ScheduleReader, a standalone software product, independently developed by the company Synami.

ScheduleReader can open existing Primavera P6 project files, allowing companies to communicate schedule information using the .xer and ,xml file formats, as opposed to static PDF files.

XER files are opened with incredible speed and project information is instantly displayed on the application screen, which features different views, to navigate between the categories of data in the schedule following how they are represented in the original scheduling program.

The software provides dynamic view access to all information in the project file with extensive support for analysis, easy navigation, filtering, sorting, and grouping of project data.

ScheduleReader is compatible and can be used alongside the Primavera P6 application to provide the broader project team with view access to existing project schedules.

In this regard, it improves the overall project communication, one of the key factors that influence the on-time and on-budget completion of projects.

In addition, it features a unique Progress Update mode, enabling secure two-way communication between the scheduler and onsite teams, allowing them to report back real-time feedback updates on project and activities status.

The software is reported to provide several upgrades and version release throughout the year, and always follow its compatibility with the file formats associated with the Primavera P6 schedules, ensuring continued support for viewing project data created with the latest version of P6.

New features and upgrades that satisfy growing client needs are also included in the ScheduleReader version releases. It is also available in a PRO version, with added features for predefined reports and dashboards generation, creation of custom reports, a comprehensive DCMA 14 schedule assessment check and a unique Linear Scheduling view able to display project data with Time-location charts.

The software is available for download and evaluation during the 15-day free trial period from the official website.