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iCal 4.x - Exchange Calendaring Quick Guide

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Overview

This quick guide is for iCal 4.x with an MIT Exchange account. If you have not already configured iCal to connect to your MIT Exchange account, see Apple Mail and iCal 4.x on Mac OS X 10.6: Configure for MIT Exchange.

By default you will have two Exchange calendars in your MIT Exchange account. The one named "Calendar" is for events, and the one named "Tasks" is for your to-do items. These correspond to the two types of entries in iCal:

  • Event: an appointment, a meeting, or a note on your calendar.
  • To Do: a task or action item.

When people talk about Exchange calendars, meetings, and appointments they are usually referring to events. The following sections of this document are designed to help you get started working with events.

Change Your Daily, Weekly and Monthly views

You can change your calendar view to display different periods of time. In the iCal window, click Day, Week or Month to view that time period at a glance.
iCal window

Create a Calendar Event

  1. Click on your Exchange calendar in the list of calendars.
  2. Choose File > New Event.
  3. Double-click on the new event to open the event details window.
    Result: The event details window opens.
    New Event window
  4. Click on New Event to enter a name for the event.
  5. To adjust the date and time, click on the dates and times beside From and To.
  6. To schedule a repeating appointment, set the repeat menu appropriately. For more details see: Schedule a Recurring Meeting.
  7. To set the appointment as private, check the box for private.
  8. To attach information, click the link to Add File...
  9. To add comments or notes to the meeting, click on the word None next to Note and type them in the field provided.
  10. Click Done to close the event window.
    Result: The event is added to your calendar.

Scheduling Meeting with Others

You can schedule meetings with individual or resources (conference room, equipment) and see if they are free to attend. One way iCal lets you know an individual or resource is available is by displaying icons next to their name. The icons and their meanings are as follows:

  • - The individual or resource is available during the specified time.
  • - The individual or resource is busy during the specified time.
  • - The individual or resource has a tentative meeting, has not responded to an invitation for a meeting at the specified time, or has their exchange account forwarded to another calendaring system so availability can't be determined.
  • - The account is not in the Exchange Global Address List. Usually this means the individual does not have an MIT Exchange account. They can still receive and accept invitations, but you will not be able to see their availability.

To schedule a meeting:

  1. Click on your Exchange calendar in the list of calendars.
  2. Choose File > New Event.
  3. Double-click on the new event to open the event details window.
    Result: The event details window opens.
    New Event window
  4. Click on New Event to enter a name for the event.
  5. To adjust the date and time, click on the dates and times beside From and To.
  6. In the location field, type the name of the meeting location. If the location is a resource, such as a shared conference room, you can book it here. Be sure you have set the correct meeting times first. You will not be able to see if the resource is available for your meeting unless the meeting time is set first. Most conference room resources contain the name of the department and the building/room number. If you're not sure of the name of the resource you need, start typing in the name of your department.
    Result: The global address list will attempt to auto-complete the name and show you a list of options. You can tell if the resource is available by looking at the icon next to the name.
    Sample Event location
  7. To schedule a repeating appointment, set the repeat menu appropriately. For more details see: Schedule a Recurring Meeting.
  8. To set the appointment as private, check the box for Private.
  9. To invite others, click on Add Invitees... and type the names of the individuals and any additional resources (conference rooms, equipment) you want to invite to the meeting in the field provided. The global address list will attempt to auto-complete names.
  10. Once you have listed all the invitees, click outside the invitee text entry area.
    Result: The Available Meeting Times link appears. This will open the scheduler that allows you to see free/busy time for all invitees and resources so you can select a time when everybody is available.
    Available Meeting Times link
  11. Click Available Meeting Times to open the scheduler.
    Result: The scheduler opens. Notice that conference rooms booked in step 6 also appear in the scheduler so you can be sure your conference room, resources, and individuals are all available at the selected time. The dark colored block is the proposed meeting time. The lighter colored blocks are when all invitees are available. The grayed out times are when invitees are busy. You can drag the dark colored block to move the meeting time. You can switch days by clicking on the arrows on either side of the date. You can also click Next Available Time to move the meeting to the next time that all meeting invitees are available.
    Availability for Sample Event
  12. Click Done.
    Result: The scheduler closes and the event details window is updated with the meeting time you selected.
  13. To attach information, click the link to Add File...
  14. To add comments or notes to the meeting, click on the word None next to Note and type them in the field provided.
  15. Once you have finished entering all your event details, click the Send button.
    Result: The appointment is added to your calendar and the invitation is sent to all invitees.
    Note: Once you have started creating a meeting, you cannot cancel out of creating the meeting. You must finish creating the meeting, then delete it if you change your mind. We recommend you delete any invitees before finishing creating a meeting you intend to delete to avoid stray invitations and any confusion that could cause.

Modify a Meeting You Scheduled

  1. Double-click on the meeting and click edit.
    Result: The events details window opens.
  2. Modify the meeting options.
  3. Click Send.
    Result: The meeting is updated and invitees (if any) are sent an email notifying them of the updates. If the meeting is recurring, you will be prompted to select how the updates will affect future meetings in the series.
  4. If the meeting is recurring and change is only needed for this instance in the series, choose Only This Event. If the meeting is recurring and all future meetings in the series need to change, choose All Future Events.
    Result: The series of meetings are updated according to your selection.

View Invitee Responses

  1. Double-click on the meeting and click edit.
    Result: The event details window opens.
  2. Next to each invitee you will see a green check mark for those that will attend and a red circle with a cross through it for those that will not attend.

Cancel a Meeting

  1. Click on the event in your calendar to select it.
  2. Hit the Delete key.
    Result: You are asked if you are sure if you want to delete the event.
  3. Choose Delete and Notify.
    Result: The event is cancelled and invitees (if any) are sent a cancellation notice.

Schedule a Recurring Meeting

  1. While scheduling a meeting, select none next to Repeat.
  2. From the drop-down menu, select the frequency at which you want the meeting to repeat, or select Custom to adjust the frequency further.
    Result: Once you have selected a repeat frequency, the End menu option appears. This allows you to select how long you'd like your meeting to repeat.
  3. From the drop-down End menu, select how long you'd like your meeting to keep repeating.
  4. Once you complete scheduling the meeting and the repeat frequency, click Send to finish.
    Result: The event is added to your calendar and invitations are sent to invitees (if any).

There are a few things you should know about repeating meetings:

  • You can turn a single event into a repeating meeting. Double-click on the meeting and click edit, then follow the instructions above to add the recurrence.
  • You cannot add an isolated date out of sequence to the series, e.g., a Tuesday meeting to make up for an every Monday meeting that is cancelled due to a holiday. You can schedule a new meeting to add the non-standard Tuesday date.
  • When you edit a recurring event, you will be prompted at the end of editing to choose whether you are editing the single occurrence or all future occurrences of the recurring event.

Schedule an All Day Event

To schedule a daily note (e.g., vacation, holiday):

  1. While scheduling a meeting, check the box for all-day.
    Result: The times will disappear leaving only dates next to From and To.
  2. Select the your dates for from and to. For a single day event, from and to will be the same day.
  3. Once you complete the rest of the meeting details, click Send to finish.
    Result: The event is added to your calendar and invitations are sent to invitees (if any).

Respond to an Invitation

You can respond to a meeting in Mail or in iCal. Once you respond to a meeting, you can change your response within the calendar unless you have declined the meeting. If you Decline a meeting, the proposed meeting is removed from your calendar and, by default, the meeting notification is moved to your Trash. When you respond to a meeting invite, the meeting organizer will automatically receive an email with your reply.

  • Respond to a meeting from iCal
    In the Notifications section of the iCal window, click Maybe, Decline, or Accept.
    or
    In the calendar itself, double-click the meeting to view the event details and click Maybe, Decline, or Accept.
  • Respond to a meeting from Mail
    With the meeting notification email open, click on Maybe, Decline, or Accept.

    Print Your Calendar

  1. While viewing your calendar, select from the menu File > Print...
    Result: The printing options screen opens.
  2. Select the calendars, data, and time-range you wish to print.
  3. Click Continue
    Result: The print dialog appears. Select your printer and print as usual. For information on setting up printing, see Mac OS X 10.6 and 10.6: Set up LPD Printing.

Related Links

Calendaring Help Wizard
Exchange Email and Calendaring
Apple Mail and iCal 4.x on Mac OS X 10.6: Configure for MIT Exchange
iCal 4.x Calendaring: Set Sharing or Delegate Permissions

IS&T Contributions

Documentation and information provided by IS&T staff members


Last Modified:

February 03, 2016

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