MacMost Now 674: Sharing Calendars With iCloud

iCloud makes it easy to share calendars with others. You can create a public calendar that is read-only to others and anyone can subscribe to it. You can also create shared calendars that can be viewed and/or updated by a list of others you invite.

Video Transcript
Hi, this is Gary with MacMost Now. On today's episode, let's take a look at sharing calendars with iCloud. Sharing calendars with iCloud is pretty simple. There are two types of shared calendars. One is a public calendar. This is where you can add events to it, but to everybody else it's read-only. And everybody else can easily view this calendar. There's also a shared calendar where you and others can add events. And new people can only see the calendar and add events to it by invitation. Let me show you. So here we are in iCal in Lion. Now, you can view your calendars by clicking on Calendars here. You can see I've got one default iCloud calendar. To create a new one, I go to File, New Calendar, and select iCloud. And then I can name the calendar. So I'm going to name this one Public Shared. And now I've got this new calendar here. I'm going to control-click on the calendar and go to Share Calendar. And this brings up this dialog box here. I can share it with it a different name if I want. And set it for Everybody or Only the people you invite. Now if I set it to Everyone and I share it, now I can once again go in here, control-click on it, and Get Info. And here is a url at that I can send to other people to let them subscribe to the calendar. Notice I could also go in here and send invitations. So this will open Mail up and allow me to send out an invitation and it has the url right in here. Now let's say you've got an invitation to subscribe to a public calendar. So I've actually got one of those. I've copied it to buffer from the email and I'm going to go to Calendar, Subscribe. I'm going to paste in this url here and hit Subscribe. And you can see information about it. I can select whether or not I want to remove alerts, say, or attachments from it, and how often I want to Auto-refresh. Click OK and you can see it's been added. There's actually an event right here. I can click on that event and that is something that's on that shared calendar there. If I click on Calendars here, I can see that I've got a subscription to Gary's Public Shared, which is what I just subscribed to. So this is how you could set up, say, if you've got a school or a sports team or something else, and you want to set up a public calendar. You can do that and then have other people subscribe to the calendar. You update the events and other people who have subscribed to it automatically get these updates and see these events in their calendar, as long as they have it selected right there. Now you could also create a calendar that's shared with only a limited amount of people and many people can read and write to it. So let's create a new calendar, iCloud. We'll call it, let's say, Shared Work Calendar. Maybe it's shared with a work group. And then control-click on it, Share Calendar. And then set it to only people you invite. You can then invite some people. Put their iCloud accounts in there. And you can set them, you can see here, to the privileges, to Read & Write, for instance. So once you've established this calendar, other people can actually update events in it and add events to it. And then everybody in the group would see the update. And of course you aren't restricted to just using iCloud for this. There are other calendar services, like Google calendars, that allow you to share calendars and you can use them with iCal. You just have to set up a Google account in the system preferences. And then you have the ability to work with those in iCal as well. And of course the advantage of that is if somebody isn't using iCloud, perhaps not even using a Mac, you can still share calendars. And you can also establish calendar services on your own on your own server, perhaps your school or company already does this. So there are a lot of different options. Hope you found this look at sharing calendars on iCloud useful. Til next time, this is Gary with MacMost Now.

Comments: 38 Responses to “MacMost Now 674: Sharing Calendars With iCloud”

    Murray A
    2/22/12 @ 9:28 am

    In Calendars, I have one calendar “ON MY MAC” and one for iCloud. Practically everything is duplicated, but not everything. How do I combine the 2?

      2/22/12 @ 9:48 am

      Simply stop using the “on my Mac” calendar. Just use the iCloud one.

      2/23/12 @ 10:19 am

      Step 1)
      Select your ON MY MAC Calendar and go to
      File-> Export-> Export…
      Save this ON MY MAC.ICS file to your desktop

      Step 2)
      Go to File-> Import-> Import…
      choose the ON MY MAC.ICS file you exported in step 1 and click Import.
      You will be prompted to select a destination calendar. Choose your iCloud calendar and all events will now be on this one calendar.

      Step 3)
      Once you verify that all the events are showing on your iCloud calendar, go to your calendar listing and right-click your ON MY MAC calendar and choose delete.

    Bruce Payne
    2/22/12 @ 9:35 am

    Can you share calendars from iCloud (running Lion) to MobileMe (running Snow Leopard)

    Helpful video….

      2/22/12 @ 9:48 am

      I doubt you can do the private sharing (where you can update the calendars). But you might be able to subscribe to a public calendar.
      Of course even if your Mac is running Snow Leopard you can still log on to and access the iCloud calendar there.

    Ron D
    2/22/12 @ 10:48 am

    Why do I get duplicates in iCal on my Mac and iPhone? Is there a way to delete duplicates?

      2/22/12 @ 10:54 am

      Most likely because you are subscribed to the same (or similar) calendar twice. You could be subscribed to the new iCloud version and your old MobileMe one. Could be iCloud and your old “On My Mac” one (synced from iTunes). Simply identify the duplicate calendar in your settings and eliminate it.

    Ron D
    2/22/12 @ 12:02 pm

    Gary,thanks, I assume it is settings on iPhone, what about Mac?

      2/22/12 @ 12:26 pm

      Check in any and all places: iPhone Calendar app, iPhone settings for calendars, iCal on your Mac. Also your iTunes sync settings for that iPhone.

    Ron D
    2/22/12 @ 3:56 pm

    Thank You.

    2/23/12 @ 10:59 am

    Great Video – Thanks! Would the shared calendar link work for people running Windows or is this a Mac / iCloud only thing?


      2/23/12 @ 11:09 am

      Try it and see. They can always get an iCloud account too — and use to view it at the very least.

    2/23/12 @ 11:18 am

    When I open info the description/url screen is blank?

      2/23/12 @ 11:22 am

      Check to make sure you have turned sharing on for that particular calendar first.

    Ihab A Hosny
    2/23/12 @ 1:30 pm

    Hi Gary,
    I have an automator calendar for all automator related calendar events on my home iMac. What can I do to not share this calendar with my work iMac since these events don’t apply to it. Both Macs share the same iCloud ID. Warmest regards,
    Ihab A Hosny

      2/23/12 @ 1:32 pm

      I would not use an iCloud calendar for this. Use an “On My Mac” calendar.

    2/24/12 @ 5:59 pm

    Hi Gary, once I create an iCloud public calendar like you described, can others subscribe via iOS? That is, without having to use their Macs?

    As always, very useful video. Love your content. The newsletter is awesome!

      2/24/12 @ 6:12 pm

      Should be able to. I see in Settings, Mail, Contacts, Calendars, you can add “Other” and a calendar subscription is one of the options. Haven’t tried it though. I did try sending an invite and then clicking on the link in Mail on my iPad. That worked.

    2/24/12 @ 9:00 pm

    Not only did it work, but I was also able to send the link via text (iMessage or SMS) by copying it from the email link. Then, when the user clicked on text link in iOS, it nicely prompted the user if she wanted to subscribe. Very cool. Thanks again!

    Ken Oliver
    3/5/12 @ 4:52 pm

    I cannot sync my ipod calendar with my mac book pro. I was getting a message saying the server path is wrong. I erased it but I don’t know what is right. I got the message when I try to refresh. Now when I try to refresh, nothing happens. What should the server path be?

      3/5/12 @ 6:43 pm

      Server path? You don’t need a server path to sync to your iCloud calendar. Just add that iCloud account in Settings and turn Calendar sync on for that account.

    4/1/12 @ 5:49 pm

    Do you know if there is a reason why Apple deletes old calendar events? It seems odd to me, because a calendar is used (mainly) for identifying and keeping track of future events but also is used to lookup past events. This has become very frustrating to me as I have realized all of my previous calendar entries were being purged. Is there a way to prevent this?

      4/1/12 @ 8:24 pm

      Old calendar events aren’t deleted. I can look in iCloud and see appointments I hd scheduled many years ago. Perhaps you are just looking on an iPhone or something? I think the little Calendar app on the iPhone only syncs old events up to a certain point.

    5/31/12 @ 10:46 pm

    Hi Gary,
    I shared my iCloud calendar with my husband. He accidentally deleted it via his iPhone. The calendar doesn’t appear on my iPad, Mac, or iPhone. Is there anything we can do to retrieve the data?
    Very worried and without dates!

      5/31/12 @ 11:00 pm

      If he completely deleted the calendar from iCloud (not just removed it from his iPhone) then it is gone. Did you check at

        6/1/12 @ 5:03 am

        Yes, I checked on via each of my devices. Ugh!!!

    8/30/12 @ 11:11 pm

    I was sent an email to join an icloud calender, but nothing happened when I clicked on the ”join” tab.
    What could be the problem

      8/31/12 @ 6:55 am

      Not sure. Are you using Mountain Lion or at least Lion? Did you check in Calendar app to see if the Calendar is there? Maybe the person who created it has removed it since? Hard to troubleshoot without being in front of it.

    Bruce Anschutz
    10/26/12 @ 10:44 am

    Ever since the iOS6 update, every time my wife updates her calendar I receive an invite instead of it just “showing up”. Is there a way for both of us to remove this nuisance? I use a MacBook Pro and iPad3, she’s only on the iPad2 with iOS6.

      10/26/12 @ 11:12 am

      Sounds like you aren’t sharing a calendar, but maybe something else. A lot depends on what system you are using (Gmail, Yahoo, iCloud, etc) and how you have ti set up on both ends. Just check and re-check everything on both ends to sort it out.

        11/28/12 @ 5:46 am

        Me too. Sharing google calendar via iPhone. New calendar events appear in my partner’s iPhone as an invitation. We have changed nothing. Seems to have started by itself.

    11/30/12 @ 9:14 pm

    Hi folks, Does anyone know if there is any advantage to using a shared iCloud calendar between two people as apposed to using a shared google calendar between two people. My wife and I have two iPhone 4s’s and two macbook’s and so we would be sharing our calendar on all four devices. Thanks in advance to anyone who can help :)

    11/30/12 @ 11:46 pm

    Hi Gary,

    I decided to just go ahead and set up my family calendar using iCloud, and when I hit “control option” and then “get info”, nothing shows up in the description box like when you did it. I set up my apple id many years ago–well before iCloud hence my apple id ends in Could this have something to do with it? Anyhow, I did test it and non-the-less, it seems to be working. But I must say that I am curious as to why that URL does not show up in the description box.

      12/1/12 @ 9:30 am

      Nothing to do with your email address. May have to do with the fact things change — this video is 9 months old and there have been updates.

    Cheryl Detrick
    2/17/13 @ 10:31 pm

    Hi Gary:

    If I share a calendar with multiple people, will they all see the list of who is sharing it?

Comments Closed.