MacMost Now 168: Connecting iCal and Google Calendar

Learn how to connect iCal to your Google Calendar. You can add events and update either one and they will synchronize within minutes.

Video Transcript
Hi, this is Gary with MacMost Now. Today let's look at how to connect iCal with Google Calendar.
Now we've been able to connect iCal with Google Calendar for a while now. There's been some third party utilities that do it and also, Google has supported this since July with the addition of a protocol would allow communication between the two different calendars.
But recently they've added a ability to set this up very easily and they've made the collaboration between the two calendars official. So Google announced it one their blog earlier this week. If you go the announcement which can be found at googlemac.blogspot.com, you can see that they've got a setup program for iCal.
Now this can be found at this web address.
Once you download this collaboration tool it's fairly easy to go ahead and get things going.
The first thing you'll be asked to do is sign in with your Gmail email address and your password for your calendar. It will then show you a list of calendars and you can go and choose which ones you want to appear in both in Google Calendar and iCal.
So it's best to start with the calendar that's in Google Calendar and bring that over to iCal.
So once you've got that going, I tested it and it works great. You add something to Google Calendar and in five minutes it appears in your iCal and vice versa. You can make changes to events as well. This is a great way to be able to share your calendar, but still go ahead and keep using iCal. You can also make collaborative calendars this way by simply have a collaborative calendar at Google Calendar and then go ahead and bring that into iCal and have people make changes to it that way.
Now of course you need a google account to be able to use Google Calendar, but you probably already have one if you have a Gmail account or if you use iGoogle or any of the Google services then you've already got a Google account and you've got a Google calendar even if you've never used it.
Now the whole thing is still far from perfect. For instance, when I left iCal open, I occasionally got messages that is wasn't able to connect to Google Calendar because the password was wrong. Well, I didn't change the password and if I entered it in again
it connected OK. So there's some connection problem. iCal by default is checking every five minutes to Google Calendar so I guess sometimes it just doesn't quite connect and give you a bad error message. Hopefully this will be corrected whether it's on the Apple side or the Google side.
It's been a busy week for Google on the Mac side of things in the browser window. To get to the googlemac blog, all you need to do is go here and you can read all about all the things going on at Google that relates to the Mac.
Another thing that Google has done this week is add in new looks for Gmail. It's a whole different set of templates that you can go ahead and customize the look of Gmail. And addition to that there's a new look to the Google Reader if you use that application as well.
Thanks for watching. Until next time, this is Gary Rosenzweig with MacMost Now.

Comments: One Response to “MacMost Now 168: Connecting iCal and Google Calendar”

    Jon Payne
    12/7/09 @ 10:41 am

    This is no longer supported by Google. They do have a new method that they point you to. It wont work until you clear the calendar cache in userhomedir/Library/Calendars.

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