11 Replies Latest reply: Aug 24, 2010 8:58 AM by Julian Wright
Mike Lipay Level 2 Level 2 (225 points)
I use a Mac at home and on the road, but have to use a Win-XP at work. Is there a way to keep both sets of calendars on my iPod (iCal and Outlook)?

15" MBP, Mac OS X (10.6.2), Currenly have: 1 MBP, 1 MB, 1 PB, 1 iMac
  • Julian Wright Level 7 Level 7 (34,860 points)
    MobileMe will keep your iCal, your Outlook and any iOS devices in sync:

    http://www.apple.com/mobileme/

    Syncs a lot more than just calendars too...
  • Mike Lipay Level 2 Level 2 (225 points)
    Right. But I am looking at only syncing the calendars, and looking for a "free" way of doing this. Paying for MM just to sync calendars isn't cost efficient.
  • Julian Wright Level 7 Level 7 (34,860 points)
    Free? How much do you value your calendar data?

    Syncing is a complicated thing to do properly, reliably and without conflicts or data loss and costs considerable amounts of money to develop. 'Free' also generally means no support if anything goes wrong.

    You can try Google Sync though, if you and your work are happy to have all your data stored with them, with no support.
  • Mike Lipay Level 2 Level 2 (225 points)
    By "free" I wasn't taking no-cost (which is why it was in quotes). I'm looking for an app or something that would do the job, no problem paying for that. But $99/year just to sync the calendar is more than a bit much. I don't need to sync the mail, contacts, notes, etc. Just the calendar.

    This isn't a corporate thing, just something to make my life a little easier than having to enter each appointment in both places.
  • Julian Wright Level 7 Level 7 (34,860 points)
    Try Google Sync. It may suit your needs. I can't vouch for its reliability though.
  • Mike Lipay Level 2 Level 2 (225 points)
    Ok, I'm guessing it doesn't exist. I'm not looking for a service to upload/download. I just thought there might be an app for this, or something in the iTunes application.
  • Julian Wright Level 7 Level 7 (34,860 points)
    I'm not looking for a service to upload/download


    Huh? That's what syncing is!!

    How do you expect your calendars to transfer between your Mac, PC and iPod without some kind of uploading/downloading/syncing between them?

    There has to be a 'central repository' that keeps track of the changes on each device otherwise you'll end up with lost data, duplicates and all kinds of problems.

    The ability to transfer calendar data is built-in to the iPod and iCal and Outlook, but there needs to be something else that talks to all three to manage the safe and reliable transfer of data.

    iTunes also acts as the go-between from iCal and iPod or Outlook and iPod, but as the iPod is designed only to sync with one computer at a time, I'm not sure how well, if at all, it will handle syncing from multiple computers and what would happen with duplicates etc.

    Back up your calendar data and try it if you want.
  • Mike Lipay Level 2 Level 2 (225 points)
    Syncing is a communication between two or more devices to keep the data in agreement. You can sync files between a Mac and a flashcard.

    I develop java apps, I keep the working projects on a flashcard that I sync to my Mac and to the work PC. The flashcard is the "central repository" if you will.

    I was looking for an app that would use the iPod as the CR between the Mac and the PC, containing the calendar information only.
  • Julian Wright Level 7 Level 7 (34,860 points)
    I know what syncing is. I develop iSync Plugins for "proper" syncing between Macs and mobile phones.

    I develop java apps, I keep the working projects on a flashcard that I sync to my Mac and to the work PC. The flashcard is the "central repository" if you will.


    Ok... so in that case, what is keeping track of changes to the files on the flashcard? When you plug it into the Mac after using it on the PC, what decides which files are newer and which files to move from the flashcard to the Mac, and which files to move from the Mac to the flashcard? What decides what to do when there is newer data on both?

    I suspect you are not actually syncing, but simply manually copying the data each time using the flashcard as the transport medium.

    Have you tried configuring iTunes on both your home Mac and work PC to sync calendars to your iPod touch? If so, does it work or is data overwritten?
  • Mike Lipay Level 2 Level 2 (225 points)
    {quote:title=Julian Wright wrote:}
    Ok... so in that case, what is keeping track of changes to the files on the flashcard? When you plug it into the Mac after using it on the PC, what decides which files are newer and which files to move from the flashcard to the Mac, and which files to move from the Mac to the flashcard? What decides what to do when there is newer data on both?

    I suspect you are not actually syncing, but simply manually copying the data each time using the flashcard as the transport medium.


    No, I have two sync programs, one on the Mac, one on the PC, they sync their files to the flashcard.


    {quote:title=Julian Wright wrote:}
    Have you tried configuring iTunes on both your home Mac and work PC to sync calendars to your iPod touch? If so, does it work or is data overwritten?


    That was my question, can it be done? I'm guessing, from what you are saying here, that iTunes should be able to handle it? I don't have iTunes on the PC, so I haven't tried it. Is the functionality the same as on the Mac?
  • Julian Wright Level 7 Level 7 (34,860 points)
    iTunes on Mac & PC are identical. But the thing is... iOS devices are designed to be synced to only one computer.

    So, for instance, iTunes on the Mac doesn't expect changes to have been made to the data on the iPod since it was last synced. I'm not sure how iTunes would handle it if changes are made on the PC in-between syncs with the Mac.

    Maybe if your calendars on the Mac had different names to the ones on the PC you'd be ok, but if you were syncing the same calendars, you may run into trouble.

    You'd have to try it - but backup your calendars first on both Mac & PC!

    EDIT: Here you go, I just found an Apple Support article on the subject:

    http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1474

    Data loss is likely...