I'm a fan of Google's online calendar (GCal), but you need to do some work to get it to be synchronised with OS X's built-in iCal application. But it's worth doing, as you can then use the local application without having to have GCal open all the time in a browser, and you keep a local copy when you're not connected to the internet. GCal's printing support is OK, but it's easier and better-looking from iCal.The main ways of achieving this are:

  • Try and then buy Spanning Sync preference pane ($65) which uses their own server to manage the sync between your different sources
  • Buy gSync (£10) which needs no third-party server, so could be more secure, and supports Google Apps FYD and multiple iCal accounts
  • Try and then buy BusySync preference pane ($20)
  • GCalDaemon (free), which is secure, more flexible (supports multiple accounts, GAFYD, some contact sharing), and cross-platform, but needs significant setup which I wouldn't recommend for people without Unix skills.
  • Wait until Google (almost certainly) release GCal that works with Google Gears, and provides its own offline service - albeit still in a browser page.

What have I opted for? Knowing some Unix, I'd like to go with GCalDaemon, but according to this forum thread, Leopard has made significant changes to iCal, and it breaks GCalDaemon at the moment. Having Google add offline support will be good, but no-one knows when that will come. So, I went with gSync.

AuthorJonathan Clark