Is there a way to have sub-tasks and dependent tasks?

I’m new to Obsidian. I seem to have a handle on using it as a knowledge store and I am now trying to work out a system for project/task management. I’m wondering if there is any way to have sub-tasks and dependent tasks.

As an example, imagine you wanted to paint a room; you may have a tasklist like this:

- [ ] Paint main bedroom
  - [ ] Decide colour
  - [ ] Buy paint
  - [ ] Prepare surfaces
  - [ ] Paint room

If the four sub-tasks are crossed off, is there a way for the main task/project be marked off automatically or is manually the only option?

Buying paint is dependent on deciding the colour; you need to know what colour to buy. Likewise, actually painting the room is dependent on finishing the first three tasks. The Tasks plugin allows a start date - is there a way to write something like “Buy paint start date” == “Decide colour completed date” or, again, can this only be done manually?

Thanks for any advice!

Tasks is pretty limited in its support of subtasks. You may be able to do a little more (such as checking off the main item when the subtasks are done) programmatically with dataviewjs but it would not be particularly easy. If you are willing to be a bit less automated, one thing I have been doing with Tasks that are subtasks of a project is leaving all the ones that cannot be done yet out of my Tasks queries by making them just list items instead of checkboxes, or not putting the global filter on them. Then when I finish a step I use the backlink on the finished step to edit the next step such that it will be included.
I hope others will share their strategies also, and you will get some ideas you like!

Thanks for taking the time to respond to my question and confirming that it cannot be done without some javascript trickery (which is beyond my abilities at the moment). I appreciate it! :+1: :smile:
I’ll wait and see if anyone else has some suggestions - there is certainly many ways to set things up in obsidian - and perhaps put in a feature request with the Tasks plugin developer.

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I found some discussion concerning how to possibly do what you are intending using obsidian-tasks

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If you’re happy to manage these tasks using a Kanban style interface, then you can do this (marking the parent as complete when all child tasks have been done) in the Cardboard plugin. See the readme for details - it involves having to tag the parent task and you have to mark it as complete in the Cardboard view.

I’ve not updated the plugin since the Christmas break but I do hope to do some more with it!


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