LOG ON or RUN AS GCADMIN!
Logging (the checkbox) should not be enabled in a
production setting. The checkbox should be enabled only to create
detailed logs to send along with a support call.
the first button (step 1) to create the Group Calendars on your Exchange server.
Calendar definition form will open.
Hold your mouse over the buttons or
bold labels for an explanation of the functionality.
The two buttons on the left must both
be clicked once. The 'Check PF root' button checks the name of your
public folders store and gives an OK message or an error.
If you get an error you may have
another Public Folders root name (check that in Outlook) or more likely
- insufficient access rights.
- No local public folders store on the server.
- Not logged on as 'gcadmin'
- No permissions to create public
- A dll is not correctly registered.
to fix that do
Start - Run: regsvr32 "C:\Program Files\Exchsrvr\bin\exodbprx.dll"
(*) check the step C install instructions
and also check if the gcadmin user is able to open, change and save the
Config.INI file which resides in the same folder as the gcadmin.exe
Maybe the gcamdin account has no permissions to edit the files in the
create the Root folder. This is the place in Outlook
where all Group Calendars will be listed. You can accept the
default name 'GroupCalendars' or change the default. Do not use the
name of an already existing folder created with Outlook. You must create
a new root folder with this gcadmin tool.
The 'Create Root folder'
button must be pressed at least once, even if you don't change the name
of the Root. An error message will indicate insufficient access
rights. In that case repeat step C of the installation instruction. If
all goes well you will get two OK messages.
almost unlimited number of Group Calendars can now be created. Press
the 'Refresh' button to see the calendars already created.
|Create new Group Calendars by typing the
name in the box and clicking the 'Add' button.
If they fail to show up in the list
that says 'currently defined GroupCalendars'
try to create another GroupCalendar root name on the left hand bottom.
|Use the Exchange/Outlook security to
define user access to some of the Group Calendars you create here. By
default everyone will be Author and able to view or even edit the information in the Group
You can change the permissions from
within Outlook (logged on as gcadmin) or from the Exchange Command line
shell. Users need only reviewer rights to see
the content. Even when they have no permissions at all, their
appointments can still show up in a groupcalendar.
So it is safe to set user permissions to a
low level or even untick the 'Folder visible' for some users.
One thing is very important though. The GCADMIN account must
always be listed as owner.
The Exchange command shell would need
two commands for this. The first one to remove the current permissions
for the default role:
Remove-PublicFolderClientPermission \GroupCalendars\everyone -User Default -AccessRights Author
and the second command to enable reviewer
Add-PublicFolderClientPermission \GroupCalendars\everyone -User
Default -AccessRights Reviewer
You may want to recursively add
permissions to multiple public folders under the root folder all at
once. Then you can use this command syntax:
get-publicfolder "FolderName" -recurse
| add-publicfolderclientpermission -accessrights "rights" -user "user"
get-publicfolder \GroupCalendars -recurse
| add-publicfolderclientpermission -accessrights OWNER -user GCADMIN
Click on one of the GroupCalendars in
the list to see the current status of the two-way
replication feature for that GroupCalendar.
In GroupCalendars that have a green box, users
with sufficient permissions (*) can
create or change items in the GroupCalendar and the change will replicate back to the
personal calendar. This is a nice feature for office managers and
others who need easy access to other peoples schedules for editing.
The egcGridView tool is available and using that,
meetings and appointments can be created for other users as well in the
When a scheduled meeting is moved in
the GroupCalendar, the item will update automatically in the organizers personal calendar and the other users (attendees) will automatically receive an
update notice which seems to come from the organizer.
Single items (non meetings) will simply follow the change in the groupcalendar.
Deleting from the GroupCalendar is not (and will not
become) available. Editors that want an item gone from the user's calendar and thus from the GroupCalendar should either:
- Change the subject of the group item (add cancelled or remove)
so the owner can see it needs deletion in the personal calendar, or,
- Move the item in the group to Sunday night or any other date that you see fit
to use as your "deleted items day"
Users that you want to allow to edit items in
two-way sync enabled calendars or users that want to use the GridView
tool to edit and create items, should have Edit permissions.
(Note that you can remove the create
items tick as well but drag and drop will then not work
and create will not work in the gridview tool. Editors will have to open the
appointment and change the item in that way. Another alternative setting
reported by a licensee using GridView is to set the permissions to Publishing
Editor and also click Folder contact )
Users that you want to only view items in two-way
sync enabled calendars should have these permissions.
This goes for non two-way sync enabled calendars as well.
You can edit these permissions in Exchange system
manager or from Outlook (right click the public folder calendar) when logged in as gcadmin.
Permissions for editors
view only permissions
'General Settings' button enables you to configure what type of items
should be displayed in the Group Calendars.
This collection of setting applies to all your GroupCalendars but can be
overruled with specific settings per calendar and per rule.
(example: You can disable the
display of "Free Time" items in the general settings. If you
have a "vacations" groupcalendar you might want to show only
"free time" items there so in the Override setting of the
"Vacations" calendar you would tick the "Show Free
time" option and leave all other settings intact as specified in
There are a lot of options you can use
to make sure that every groupcalendar only shows the desired
information. Combine this with the user permissions you can set on every
Public Folder from within Outlook and you have all the tools to make
sure that every user only sees the information they need.
(With regards to setting permissions
on calendars; nobody needs access but gcadmin. A users' calendar
items can be visible in a GroupCalendar while that GroupCalendar remains
invisible to that user!)
The settings are grouped by the
property that leads the action. The first form holds the Miscellaneous
Rules, the actions based on the Private property and actions
based on the Category property of an appointment.
By default, all items in the
groupcalendars will be displayed with the initials of the user in
If no initials are available in the active directory, the exchange alias
will be used.
However it is possible to override this behavior by selecting the user
name display option and take a pick from the available name parts. The
number 100 represents the choice to use all characters of a name part.
The 'order' 1 to 4 can be changed to compose the desired format.
In the example to the right you see the choice :
All initials + all of last
The two checkboxes for first name and
full name are not ticked so they will not be used.
the mouse over a bolded label to learn how the options works.
Press the "NEXT" button
second form of the General Settings - settings handles the
rules based on the Subject and Body property of an
the General Settings form.
the General Settings form.
in the calendar Definition (step #1) you can now select one of the
GroupCalendars you defined earlier and click the Override Settings
we selected the Vacation groupcalendar we defined earlier.
While configuring the specific rules
for this calendar we can still see what the General Settings are. The
dark grey boxes on the left show the general setting and the dark grey
option on the right shows the effective setting for this Vacation
effective setting has status ON so for this calendar the appointments
with @@@ in the body will not be visible.
If the general settings change, that
change will also effect the settings for this option in this Specific
Override option has status ON. Because Specific is OFF the Effective
result is OFF. This calendar will not hide appointments with @@@ in the
Override option has status ON and the Specific option is ON. The
Effective result is that the option is turned ON for this calendar.
If the general settings change, that
change will not effect the settings for this option in this Specific
dark-grey option is not ticked. This means that the general setting for
this option has status OFF
Override option has status ON but the Specific option is OFF so the
result is still that this option is OFF.
ticking the Specific option box the rule is ON. Now appointments with
Holiday or Vacation as a category will be displayed with a specific
color in this specific GroupCalendar.
the configuration and return to the opening screen.
button # 2 to assign users to GroupCalendars.
Calendar/User Mappings form opens up. This tools enables you to
determine who's appointments will be included in a specific Group
On the left you see all Group Calendar names.
On the right are the Groups in your
Active Directory and once a Group has been selected the users will be
shown in the
For very large organizations it might
be a good idea to select an Organizational Unit that represents the top
level of the active directory where all "your" users are under
and tick the "Show only OU's under" option to narrow down the
list of OU's to an acceptable amount.
one of the users (here 'Amini' has been selected) and look below the
'disconnect' button to see his current mappings. Here it says 'Amini has been mapped
to calendar: Sales '
The mapping information can also be
found in the active directory user field 'Description'. If the
Description field already contains information the calendar mapping
information is added to that existing description.
that the text "GroupCalendar items label color for this user"
appears when you select a user. Click the white field to choose a
specific color for that user's items in the groupcalendars.
one or more of the Group Calendars in the list on the left and notice
that the connect/disconnect buttons are activated. By pressing the
appropriate button you can connect or disconnect one or more users to
one or more groupcalendars.
The other button "List users of
selected calendar(s)" will produce a printable report of the user
mappings. Click that button after selecting the GroupCalendars you are
After completion of this step you have
your GroupCalendars ready to display only what you want, the users are
set up to share their calendar info in the appropriate public calendars
and only one thing remains; start the actual sharing of information in
the calendar / user mapping form and proceed to step three
the calendar / user mapping form and proceed to step two
are back at the administration tool.
Press button # 3 to open the switch
From here you enable or disable the calendar
sharing for selected users.
In step #2 users are mapped to one or
more calendars. However until you switch them ON they will not participate
and their calendar information will not be visible in the GroupCalendars
they have been mapped to.
the users that you configured in step #2 with a GroupCalendar mapping
will be visible in the list and can be switched ON.
sure that before you remove users from all groupcalendars in step #2 you
first unshare their calendar here.
a group from the list to see the users you want to enable or disable
calendar sharing for. If this user is currently switched off,
you will see a red box. Press the 'Key' button to switch calendar
sharing ON for this user.
fails; Check the primary smtp email address of the user. Make sure the
Exchange Alias (on the 'exchange general' tab in the active directory) is
the same as the primary email address. (only the part before the @). So
email address firstname.lastname@example.org would
give alias 'jack'
If you still can not get it to work this way, open the gcadminerrorlog.txt
file from c:\Exchange Group Calendar. Browse down from the top until you
find the entry 'Exchange name :
When the value xxxxx.yyy differs from the primary email address you
must add a secondary smtp address to the user properties in the form of ALIAS@xxxx.yyy
that you have the com+ component installed and configured to run with
the gcadmin name and password. (identity tab)
you are working on users in a child domain you might have to give them a
secondary smtp address with the same namespace as the exchange server
top level. (example: The exchange server is in opus.com and the users in
child.opus.com. Give those users email@example.com
as a secondary email address.
After these steps you are ready for
testing. Simply create a new appointment in the personal calendar (*) of
one of the users and if it complies to the rules you set up in the
calendar configuration of step#1 you should now see it appear in the
(*) A common mistake is that people
create items in a calendar folder that is part of a PST file and not in
their Exchange Inbox.
To export existing
appointments from your users' personal calendars into the Group Calendar
you first select the users and click the import button. You will have to
do this only once when you start using the software.
It will not create duplicate items if
you use the option later again to fill up a newly created groupcalendar
folder with existing appointments.
(*) Before exporting existing
calendars, make sure that you stop the Exchange GroupCalendar Check &
When the export has finished and your server CPU is back at a normal level,
open the USERS.INI file in c:\Exchange Group Calendar\Service and
delete everything from it. Close the Users.ini and start the Check
& Fix service again.
Read the user
experience to learn what you can expect from the Exchange GroupCalendar
If you like the software you can order
a license here.
No need to uninstall the demo version, we will send you a license after
purchase to turn the demo version into a full version.
If it's not what you are looking for let us know. We welcome all
suggestions; in fact the current functionality of the software was
created based purely on user feedback and suggestions.
To uninstall the software you must
first stop sharing for all users in step #3. After that you select all
users and calendars in step #2 and disconnect everyone. Now you can
uninstall the software from control panel - add/remove programs. This
will remove the com+ component and executable.