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All about calendar sharing

Christopher Breen | April 26, 2013
Last week we took a very long look at the workings of Mountain Lion's Calendar application. This week, we'll delve into some of the details. Specifically, getting calendars in and out of the application and how to use Calendar with services such as Google and Yahoo.

You'll also notice the Public Calendar option in this window. If you enable it, a Web address for that calendar appears below. (This is a calendar that can be viewed but not edited.) If you click the Share button, and you can email a link to that calendar, send an iMessage that contains the link, or post the link to your Facebook page.

When the recipient receives this message, all they need to do is click the link and Calendar will open, offering them the opportunity to subscribe to your calendar. If they click Subscribe, a sheet will appear, where they can configure their subscription settings. (Something we'll get to shortly.)

Sharing Google and Yahoo calendars

iCloud presents a distinct advantage to those who want to share calendars with other people: It allows you to do everything in Calendar--create the calendars, choose recipients, and send invitations all from within the Calendar application. In the case of Google calendars, you can view and edit them within Calendar, but you can't create them. For this you must go to your Gmail page within a Web browser. When you've done that, you can view your calendar. You can't, however, share any of these calendars from within the Calendar application. Again, it's back to the Gmail site to do that.

With a Yahoo account you can create calendars within the Calendars application. But, as with Google calendars, you can't share these calendars unless you do so from Yahoo's site.

Calendar publishing

Calendar publishing sounds suspiciously like calendar sharing but I assure you that they're completely different things. Publishing, for example, starts with the letter P. There are other differences as well.

To publish a calendar with the Calendar application, that calendar must be created on your Mac rather than in iCloud, Google, or any other service. This is a calendar that you want to share outside of these services.

You'll need some kind of hosting service to do this. For example, Box.net allows you to publish calendars via its free plan. The process goes something like this.

Sign up for a Box.net account. Create a new calendar on your Mac. (If you don't have On My Mac as an option when you select File > New Calendar, go to the Accounts preference, disable the Enable This Account option for any iCloud, Yahoo, or Google account you have, and then choose File > New Calendar.) Add a couple of events.

Now select that calendar and choose Edit > Publish Calendar. In the window that appears enter https://www.box.net/dav and then enter the email address and password associated with that account. Click Publish to publish the calendar. You're then provided with the option to email that link to those you want to share the calendar with. They then receive the email and choose to subscribe, and they're good to go.

 

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