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Wise Tech Tips

Google Calendar – Part 3 (Sync with Outlook)


By James Wise
web posted September 28, 2009
TECH TIPS – Today, we’ll wrap up our look at Google Calendar with some helpful information for anyone who  uses the calendar in Microsoft Outlook. You can synchronize Google Calendar and Outlook to avoid having to enter information more than once. Today’s column covers two options for doing this. The first option is to use Google’s own (and free) Google Calendar Sync. For people wanting more powerful options, we’ll talk about another option called gSyncit.

Recently, Google released a simple and free application called “Google Calendar Sync” for synchronizing your Outlook calendar with Google Calendar. You can find “Google Calendar Sync” at: www.google.com/support/calendar/bin/answer.py?answer=89955.
That site includes a link to the setup program as well as detailed instructions.

Google Calendar Sync is a pretty basic program. You just enter your Google Calendar email address and password and select a sync type and frequency. If you enter data in BOTH Outlook and Google Calendar, use the 2-way option to add data both ways. If you enter all your data in Outlook (as I do), use the “1-way Outlook to Google” sync type. If you enter everything in Google Calendar, you can use the “1-way Google to Outlook” type. Just be careful with what you pick so that you don’t overwrite your Outlook or Google calendar by mistake!



This program works fine for simple use and may be perfect for most users. Some things I don’t like about it though are:
1)    It only supports one Google Calendar Account at a time (to synchronize multiple accounts, you would have to change the username/password each time).
2)    It only supports the default calendar associated with each Google Calendar account.
3)    It doesn’t allow for any filtering of data synchronized and even synchronizes Outlook events marked as private (which you may or may not want other people seeing in case you share your Google Calendar).

If you are looking for more advanced options like I was (including support for the items I mentioned above that Google Calendar Sync doesn’t support), you might want to checkout gSyncit. gSyncit isn’t free (it’s $14.99 per user currently) but I am using it and think it’s worth the cost for what I need. You can find gSyncit it here: http://www.daveswebsite.com/software/gsync/index.shtml and a free trial (with some limitations)
is available.

Once installed, gSyncit appears as a toolbar within Outlook. You can use the “settings” option to adjust the settings including what type of sync to perform (Outlook to Google, Google to Outlook, or both), which accounts and calendars to sync, and what to sync (i.e. don’t sync private events, only sync certain categories, etc…). In my case for example, I have three different Google Calendar accounts that I sync with Outlook.
1)    With my “work” calendar, I don’t sync private events or any events in the “personal” category.
2)    With my personal calendar, I sync everything.
3)    With my “Edgefield County Public School Holidays” calendar, I only sync items in the “school” category. I put school events in both the Personal and School categories so that they aren’t included in my work calendar.



and



I think GSyncit is fairly straightforward so I haven’t gone into many details here with the setup but if you need assistance with this program, just email me (edgefieldtechhelp@gmail.com).

By the way, if you are using the calendar in Outlook, there are all kinds of additional things you can do with that information. One example is that if you want to try and schedule a meeting or phone call with someone, you can use the “schedule time with” action in Xobni (see http://www.edgefielddaily.com/wisetechtips072009.html) to send a mail to the desired person with your availability based on your Outlook calendar entries.




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