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From the author of Fixing Calendar Problems

Fixing Calendar Problems

Problems with iCloud calendars tend to come in one of two flavors. The first is that you have duplicate events or duplicate calendars. The second is that you have problems synchronizing events. In either case, these problems tend to appear only if you are sharing your calendars with other people.

Let me get my personal bias out of the way. I don’t like Apple’s Calendar app (formerly called iCal). I think it’s limited, I think it’s terribly inflexible, and I just plain don’t like the way it looks. I much prefer two paid alternatives, both of which work excellently with iCloud shared calendaring, and which I think work much better than the stock Apple Calendar. If you only have fairly light-duty calendaring needs, then Apple Calendar will probably do just fine for you. But if your calendaring needs are at all sophisticated, then you’re going to want to look into either BusyMac’s BusyCal, or Flexibits Fantastical.

Before you try to make any fixes, as usual, you should back up the data. In the Mac Calendar app, choose File > Export > Export, and then repeat for each calendar. You’ll end up with a series of files on your hard disk with the names of the calendars.

To fix calendar duplications, the first thing you want to do is check to see whether or not the calendar is duplicated on the iCloud website or just on your local device. If the calendar is duplicated on the iCloud website, simply delete the calendar from the website. The calendar should then disappear from your local calendar app. One easy, yet inelegant fix for a duplicated calendar is not to mess with its data or delete it, but simply to hide its data by unchecking the calendar in the local Calendar app. If the problem you’re having is not duplicated calendars, but duplicated events, again, you should make your changes on the website.

If the duplicates are not on the website, consider turning off your device connectivity, turning off calendar syncing, blowing away all calendars, then turning syncing back on and allowing iCloud to re-sync and refresh all your calendar data.

To fix calendar syncing, you should make sure of a few things. First, confirm that the calendar in question is shared. Next confirm that the calendar is being shared under the same Apple ID. Next on the Mac, force refresh your calendars by choosing Calendar > Refresh All.

If you’re working in a large organization that has restrictive firewall policies, it’s worth remembering that some firewalls will block the secure protocols needed to synchronize calendar data. In that case, contact the IT staff.

On iOS devices, sometimes you may have a problem where events are showing up on the wrong calendar. The problem is that you have different default calendars set on different iOS devices. Choose Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars, then scroll down to the Calendars section and check the Default Calendar, which should be the same on all your iOS devices.

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