iCal nits and picks

How to get the most out of iCal on 10.5 and 10.6


iCal automaticaly puts events on the wrong page!


This is a screenshot from 10.5, but 10.6 is very similar. If iCal is set to automatically retrieve invitations from Mail, it puts them on the top-most calendar. This is frequently a non-shared calendar (such as Home), and those calendars can’t be moved or made non-primary. You have two options: 1) Disable the feature in iCal to automatically retrieve invitations from mail and drag the ical attachment in the message to the correct calendar; 2) Delete your Home calendar, and, if needed, add another Calendar (but keep this one private, if you wish) on your Calendar server.

iCal takes a LONG time to start up/sync


If your iCal takes a long time to start up or sync, asking iCal to Delete events x days after they have passed, the sync time will speed up dramatically. If 30 days is too short, set it for anything, such as 60 or 90 days. This way it doesn’t have to sync events so far in the past. If you really need to save your calendar for future reference, Export the calendar and then re-import it to a local (non-server-synced) calendar after you have deleted the events. And if you don’t want to do this automatically, set yourself a reminder in iCal do do this once a quarter.

How do I change the COLOR of my various calendars?


This one has a strange solution. If it’s a calendar you control, meaning it’s a calendar you created and it resides on your iCal, or you subsribed to it, just Get Info on the calendar and change the color. If you aren’t the owner of the calendar (meaning it is a calendar you see but it’s based on a Caldav server), ask the owner of that calendar to change it. Once that is done, quit iCal and start it again, and when it syncs, it will pick up the new color. Now the trick is getting everyone to pick a different color. Sorry, I can’t help with that.

I want to sync my Google/Gmail or Google Apps calendar to iCal, but I get errors

To set up CalDAV support for Google Calendar in Apple’s iCal, follow these steps:
Open Apple iCal, go to iCal > Preferences and then the Accounts tab.Click on the + button to add an account.Under Account Information, enter your Google Account username and password.Under Server Options, add the following URL:

Replace ‘charlietheguide@gmail.com’ with the email address that you use to log in to Calendar. Make sure to include the ‘@domain.com’ portion (which is @gmail.com for Gmail users) in this section.Click Add.Under the Delegation tab, select the calendars you’d like to add to iCal by checking the boxes next to them. You may need to hit refresh to get the latest list of calendars.Add your email address to your Address Book card by selecting Add Email. You’ll be prompted to add your email address only if your address is not already in your Address Book.
The two main points of clarification here are:

– removing the space from the end of the URL
– making sure you include the ‘@domain.com’ portion in the URL

You can also check this web site for future updates or changes to these instructions.

iCal just won’t work

Sometimes, try as you might, you can’t get iCal to function AT ALL. If you want to reset iCal, first, make sure you’ve backed up your data by selecting each calendar and choosing File -> Export. Then, open the Terminal application (found in the Utility folder (Go – > Utilities) and paste in this line:

rm -rf ~/Library/{Caches,Caches/Metadata,Preferences,Application\ Support}/*iCal*

This will remove all your calendars, caches, and other data from iCal so you can start from scratch.

Then you can re-set up your Caldav accounts and import your previously backed up/exported calendars and get a fresh start.

You should use this only as a last resort.

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