Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Your suggestions for future versions of EssentialPIM

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PatrickB
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Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by PatrickB »

Hello.

I'm new, I was searching for a working solution to access the calendars and tasks stored on the local Caldav server (Synology NAS) of my LAN from both my PCs and my mobile (Android). Currently I use Sunbird on the PCs (no notification since no sleeping mode) and for Android the tasks are still missing !

EssentialPIM Pro appeared to be the perfect solution, I tested the demo version and was about to order... when I saw the items all merged into my test calendars !!!! Great deception, and a showstopper of course.

I did read the existing discussions about calendars vs categories, what Google does, simplicity to have a single calendar etc.

* At first I think it is not a good practice to force Users to abandon their preferences when it is possible to serve several masters.

* Then the principle of multiple calendars is not a User choice but rather a necessary feature, considering that the User interacts with others (else, why a calendar ?), and there may be technical reasons too:
- I do have an access to calendars shared with several partners to schedule shared things, and in write mode since I must be able to interact,
- But I don't want to have my personal items pushed there, nor to get a meltdown of all theirs if some of them use EPIM too !
- My Android easily finds and connects all the calendars available on a given server account, then I can easily assign them a color, that is reported in the various widgets I use. As far as I know this is the only common way they know.
- There are other organizational reasons to make this method handier... for me and people like me.

Then, if all the content of the EPIM calendar is flushed to the sync channels, what is the real interest of having several syncs ? A replication tool ?

* So the assumption: 1 User = 1 calendar looks definitively wrong, at least in a Pro context.
But I admit that some Users may prefer to use a single calendar and distinguish categories inside it. Imho it is a separate feature, and must not be seen as a technical alternative.

* Then Google is not the world. Many people are interested by a local solution on their LAN (or single local server), for privacy and backup reasons. Owncloud was evocated but now there are affordable NAS devices with a correct implementation of Caldav, notably.

HOW to DO IT ?

The main principle with multiple calendars is that every calendar/todo item "belongs" to a calendar (= an external server = a synchronization channel to it) and this must be remembered in the item (needs an additional field in the database) so that it cannot be exported to any other external server.

Of course an item may start as or become orphan (implies there is a "default" calendar), and the User must be able to move an item (or all the items of a calendar) from a calendar to another one.

It does not look necessary to have EPIM creating the calendars on the server, usually such an adminstrative operation is not frequent and is done directly on the client account.

Then the categories can be kept as an additional option (no change, but some other viewers may ignore it) and the User may choose to merge all to only one calendar, if he prefers this way.

For the multi-calendar lovers, something must be done to support the association color / calendar. It could consist in a global option to consider the calendar names as valid categories, with no interference with the principle of separation of the synchronization channels.

That's all !

It does not look very complicated to implement, and it can be done without breaking the existing modes, just by adding some smart options.

Are you interested in it ? Can it be done soon ?

As far as I know, it will make EssentialPIM the first complete solution for this synchro of calendar and tasks:
PC-Windows <---> local (LAN) or Internet server <---> Mobile-Android.

Hope it helps.
Best regards.
Max
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by Max »

Thank you, your suggestion is noted.
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robin123
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by robin123 »

Multiple calendars. I don't know if I understood this clearly but
for me idea for Multiple calendars sounds interesting.

For example I would like to set private calendar and work calendar.
I know I can do this by add categories and show them or not in calendar view.

But it could be much more simpler if I would just change whole calendar with categories.
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by Max »

So far you can set different databases with different calendars.
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robin123
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by robin123 »

Yes I know. This is only idea and it isn't high priority.
PatrickB
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by PatrickB »

Hello.

In my first post I give rational reasons for 1 person to have write access to several distinct calendars.
The main reason in the principle is a calendar shared with other persons to manage there some common events only.

All the calendars must be visible at once in the same display of course, so I think that this cannot be done with different databases.

And the current issue, showstopper for people needing that, is that ***all the content*** of the EPIM calendar of ***every such sharing person*** will be merged back to the shared calendar, not only the shared events initially read from it !

I connected to a test calendar, created empty on the server, I created a test event, and all the samples provided with EPIM ended in the test calendar too !

Fortunately I hadn't tried to connect to all my real calendars with hundreds of items, I guess I would have had to rebuild them all from the backups...

Annoying, no ?

So I keep on Sunbird at this time, it is ugly but doesn't have such a problem. Hope it will be fixed one day (I proposed a simple way to do it).

Regards.
Max
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by Max »

PatrickP, there is not enough details for me to comment on. In general, when using Network version (I guess you were using that?),- there are very flexible user rights as to who see what and what data is made private or public. Each person of course can make private items, which are not seen by anybody, except the creator.
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PatrickB
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by PatrickB »

Good evening.

I used the Pro version 5 (with network sync) in evaluation mode to validate before buying, and now the period has expired so I cannot provide more results.

But here is the scenario:

1) On a CalDAV server (2 separate servers would be more realistic but one is enough to simulate), create 2 test calendars named, say "perso" and "pro".

2) Using another client like Sunbird/Lightning, connect to them and create some perso events in "perso", some pro events in "pro" (these ones could be shared with other people in your company).

3) Using ePIM Pro, connect to the calendars so that all the events show in ePIM (to manage time conflicts, of course you must see all at once), then try to modify for instance a pro event and tell me what happens.

Here I was very annoyed :shock: to see, unlike with Sunbird, ePIM's synchronization merge all the perso events + even the demo ones from the original install... all into the "pro" calendar on the server. Fortunately it was a test copy...
And the "perso" calendar will logically get the same, so become a replica of "pro", what is not really interesting :?

This attempt used only 2 calendars. Currently I work with 8 !
I don't think that a simple switch public/private at event level would solve, and in case of any error with that, I think that the contamination would be irreversible.

This is why this behavior is a showstopper for me, and why I opened this suggestion topic to make this use case possible.

Hope it clarified.
Best regards.
Max
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by Max »

Hello Patrick,

it depends also on a particular CalDav server. If we can get the account on it, I can test it and reply with more details.
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by deanathpc »

I totally agree with Patrick here. I use Thunderbird and the add-ons for google calendars. I have about 5 different calendars plugged in. Each calendar is it's own entity. Unlike EPim which combines everything. Even if there was a switch to allow us to keep each calendar by itself or combine would be awesome. I just spend the morning fixing this and I forgot they combine everything. That was fun. 5 calendars with many entries. Won't do that again. I hope.

I was going to suggest this but came across this thread and decided to throw in my $0.02 on the topic.

Dean
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by deanathpc »

O.K. A quick follow up to this as it is frustrating the hell out of me right now as I have entered appts. at least 6 times now because of the way synch with calendars works.

I decided to work around things and synch my google calendars one way (google to epim) so as not to create duplicates upon duplicates on my calendars. Well that made things worse. I think I have a handle on this now in regards to what it's doing.

If you don't have 2 way synch selected when it brings in a calendar it will overwrite everything. Or it would appear that way with mine. I entered in 2 weeks worth of things on my calendar and as long as I don't have my google calendar synching those items will stay. I've done this 6 times now until I realized what is going on. Unless synching to my two android devices are causing a stir which I suppose could be an issue here but I only synch once in awhile so I'm doubting it right now.

So.... How is the synching suppose to work here? I'm trying my Android devices again right now to see how it goes. Then I'll close down EPim and open it back up to see what has happened. Well doubles in my devices. Trying to now sync one way (epim to android) and see how that works. grrrr now the items in my calendar on my android devices are double. But not in EPIM. This is getting frustrating...

Dean
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by PVH »

I would like to bump this thread to indicate that I would also like the ability to use multiple calendars.
I have a personal calendar, my wife has one on her essentialpimpro, but we would like to share a third one. It would be easy to be able to overlay that third calendar on our individual calendars and to share that 'and only that) calendar between the both of us. (I don't want to see her whole private calendar, nor do we want to make every appointment we don't want to share private. Being able to put it in a separate calendar is much easier)
I also use essentialpim for my business and would love to be able to use essentialpim to plan separate calendars for employees, but be able to see them in my calendar (overlay) if i choose to and share each specified calendar with (and only with) the employee it was intended for.
Be sure to let me know if I am missing something and not using epim correct (or optimal)
Thanks.
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by Oil »

The same problem exists by using the contact list.
The outcome of synchonisation with multiple separate adressbooks is all contacts pop up in every adressbook.
To use several epim Databases is no solution, because it would be neccessary to have all e-mail accounts and emails saved in every database and of course you will not have all calendar entries in all databases.

The feature to have seperate synchronisation with several adressbooks (carddav) and several calenders (caldav) is crucial for us.
We havnt testet several E-Mail adresses, i hope they are not mixed up too.

Fortunately we bought just one licence before testing in all details and get to this lacking possibility.
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by Max »

Thank you, suggestions noted.
Maxim,
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Serna
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Re: Multiple calendars, doing it simply

Post by Serna »

Max wrote: Thu Nov 26, 2015 10:10 pm Thank you, suggestions noted.
Was this implimented Max?
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