Sync Office Computers – How to Sync Calendar, eMail, Contact and Notes on Apple OSX

31 Oct. 2013 - - Total Reads 10,707

This setup advice may help other, but mainly apple offices with multiple staff members, using some PC and some Android devices. This shows the complexity of getting the services mix exactly right, while many of us deal with imperfect systems on a daily basis and cry out ‘why can’t apple or gmail or someone get this right for us!’ The truth is it is complex for them also, as devices and computers and software changes rapidly, the ability to keep up and provide consistent service across multiple platforms is obviously near impossible. Our goal was to sync office computers data and to have the most consistent functionality from each software platform (best representing our company online) across;

  • 1. Calendars
  • 2. eMail
  • 3. Contacts
  • 4. File Sharing

We have most of our office running Apple Mac Destops, Latops, iPhones and iPads. These are quite easy to sync Calendars, eMail, Contact and Notes Individually however, as soon as you want to synconise other devices (PC, android devices, even iPhones properly) and multiple team members, it gets super clunky – things start to fall over. We know as we’ve tried every solution possible, setting up Mircosoft Exchange Server, trying Google Apps exclusively and also setting up our own internal OSX Server – none of these solutions by themselves provide an elegant, fully working solution for all of; Files, Calendars, eMail and Contacts over the air. So instead we worked out it is best broken up into the following solutions; Noting the Software we use (In Brackets) is just as important in these choices – as they are part of the consistent solution. Screenshots from system preferences follow so you can see how each is ticked.

1. Calendars –  (Running  iCal and Google Calendar) – Set this up Google CalDev (apps) – you need to setup all your staff members to use google apps (small fees may apply) but you only actually need to sync with gmail calendars. I know what you are thinking, why don’t we sync email and contacts also – you can, BUT things don’t work perfectly. Eg. Email – try syncing your new iPhone – it doesn’t allow control over where folders sit properly, it is slower than IMAP and there is an issue with where invites are sent from for Calendar (they come from gmail, not our preference iCal). You can add the CALDEV or Google Calendar account in apple’s System Preferences. This is stable across most new versions of OSX. Settings are simple once your Google Apps account for your company is setup. You can do that via you may need to start an account. It is $50 per user per year (worth it).

2. Email. (Running any of Apple Mail, iPhone, Android, iPad) We’ve tried lots of solutions here; the absolute easiest for us on OSX is a good IMAP service with SMTP included. The reason is Gmail tends to take too much control of the email account (even with Google Apps set to your domain correct eg. and there are slight functionality issues across Apple Mail and iPhone which cause even more inconsistencies.

3. Contacts and Notes. Sync separately (not connected to any of the above) via iCould; I recommend using another email address (not from your domain as it will conflict with email, apple provide these for free for individual) It is stable, updates Notes correctly on OSX and keeps the all important (Me) address book card in the correct state. Make sure you set the Me Card in Address Book as your IMAP email address (check: Go To My Card, it should have your company email address) as all you iCal invites will come from the correct place.  iCloud also comes with other nice features like find my phone and laptop – just stay clear of mail and calendar options. You would think they would get Calendar sync working properly for multiple users, but once again it falls over once you try and share to the Android phone users in the office (so limits a full solution).

4. File Sharing – (Dropbox + OSX Server or File Sharing on the fastest computer with specific Hard Drive for File Sharing). We run a single instance of OSX server, but you can run file sharing on a machine if you don’t have one spare. Dropbox allows us to synconise in the cloud but it is only connected via the File Sharing Hard drive – this way we sync to one place and then push to Drop-Box. If you need to add or download files out of office – I recommend using the Web Services only, otherwise your local machine tries to sync the Dropbox folders back to your local computer … which means you are doubling up on the File Server, which provides lightening speed and no wastage of ISP bandwidth.

Hope this has helped some of you – any Questions – feel free to ask away below –

Michael Simonetti
Posted by:

Post Reads: 10.7K

Share this

Go on, see if you can challenge us on "Sync Office Computers – How to Sync Calendar, eMail, Contact and Notes on Apple OSX" - Part of our 168 services at AndMine. We are quick to respond but if you want to go direct, test us during office hours.

Add Your Comment

Trusted by

Acquia Certified Site Builder Drupal
Street Kitchen
Melrose MCT
CB Richard Ellis
Craft CMS
Heat Holders
White Suede
Wild Rhino Shoes
SMH – The Sydney Morning Herald
Brisbane Times
Parker Lane
Castran Gilbert
Focus On Furniture
ADP Payroll
National Relay Services
The Canberra Times
One Shift
Catholic Insurance
Engineers Without Borders
QV Skincare
Fresh Cheese Company
Celebrate Health
POSTER Magazine
Plan It Sync It
The Burger Cheese
Think & Grow Rich Inc
Australian Government
NMI Insurance
Tomorrow Stars Basketball
Boston Consulting Group
Arthur Galan
Arc One
Mecca Brands
Ubertas Group
Van Egmond Group
ISO Certified
James Buyer Advocates
DeeWhy Market
Moov Head Lice
Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre – MSAC
DUSA, Deakin University Student Association
Fairfax Media
Rock Pool Group
Sports Power
Melbourne Central
Dinosaur Designs
Viktoria & Woods
Engine Swim
The Fortune Institute
The Age
Bintani Australia
CAN- Common Wealth Bank
Marshall White
Australian Anthill
Federation University Australia
131 Pizza
McArthur Skincare
Instant RockStar
Hairhouse Warehouse
Natralus Australia
RMIT University
SwinBurne University of Technology
GPT Group
Peter Mac
Sunday Creek
Bondi Sands
Bulk Nutrients
Cronos Australia
Switzer Media+Publishing
Loan Market
Etihad Stadium
Australian Physiotherapy Association
Magento Solution Specialist
Matchbox Homewares
Tek Ocean
Amino Active
21st Century Australia Party
Atlantic Group of Companies
Grays Ecommerce
Grow Your Business
Oakdale Meat Co
LBG Australia and New Zealand
Victorian Government
OMS – Order Management System
Florsheim Shoes
Microsoft Certified Azure Fundamentals
CSquared Executive
Watches of Switzerland
The University Of Melbourne
Green St Juice CO
Australian Organic Food CO
Bank of Cyprus
Ego Pharmaceuticals
Buy Aussie Now
Adobe Professional
Mamma Lucia
Associated Press
Aqium Gel
Melbourne Heart
Macmillan Publishing
High Street Armadale
Dial Before You Dig
Vendor Advocacy Australia
Smart Company
Palace Cinemas
Passage To India
Unsw Australia
Passage Foods
Cell Therapies
SunSense Digital Agency
Melrose Health
Federation Square
Royal Freemasons
National Museum of Australia
Toy World
Positive Poster
Carlton Football Club
Madman Entertainment


The &Mine team is great to work with and went beyond the brief to deliver a family violence website which was both engaging and easy to use. The team is collaborative, understand the constraints and sensitivities of a government environment and work alongside you to develop creative and practical solutions and ideas. Stakeholders have only had positive feedback about the website including with comments such as the best government website I have seen. Christine Panayotou, Director Communications, Family Safety Victoria

More Testimonials