Google Calendar Transition FAQ

Willamette University is migrating to an email and calendar solution provided by Google Apps For Education.
  1. Why is Willamette switching to Google Calendar/Google Apps?
  2. Will I still be able to use Oracle Calendar?
  3. Will I lose any of my calendar data?
  4. Can Google Calendar do everything Oracle Calendar could do?
  5. Do I have to use the web interface for Google Calendar?
  6. Who gets a Google Calendar account?
  7. Will it sync with my phone/mobile device?
  8. Can I use Outlook?
  9. Do I need to do anything?
  10. Can I save or archive my old Oracle Calendar data?

1. Why is Willamette switching to Google Calendar/Google Apps?

Our current calendar program, Oracle Calendar needs to be replaced. Having a system with email integration, better mobile device support, and more flexible sharing options is highly desirable among users of the calendar. A committee was formed to evaluate many calendar and email products, and it was decided that Google Apps for Education had the most robust offering to meet the diverse needs of the Willamette community.

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2. Will I still be able to use Oracle Calendar?

No. Oracle calendar will no longer be supported by the University or WITS. During the transition you will still have access to information in Oracle Calendar, but as of Aug 1, 2011 Willamette's Google Calendar implementation will be the officially calendar of the University.

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3. Will I lose any of my calendar data?

Moving calendar data is problematic. Many types of events (e.g. repeating meetings) do not make the transfer intact. WITS will not be migrating calendar information. You ill need to input your calendar data yourself.

WITS will be fully prepared to support this transition and help you decide what the best way to make the switch will be.

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4. Can Google Calendar do everything Oracle Calendar could do?

Google Calendar is a very robust and fully-featured calendar application. It should satisfy every need that Oracle Calendar has been able to provide. There is much better email integration and mobile device support in Google Calendar as well.

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5. Do I have to use the web interface for Google Calendar?

No, and yes. The web interface is necessary to use the web interface to perform administrative tasks. It also allows you to take advantage of all of the features of Google Calendar.  However, you can import/sync with any client that uses iCal format (e.g. Outlook, iCalendar on OSX, etc).

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6. Who gets a Google Calendar account?

Everyone. The calendar is fully integrated with the email and Google Apps. Unlike Oracle Calendar where departments had to pay for any users, access to Google Calendar for all users is already included.

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7. Will it sync with my phone/mobile device?

Yes.  As long as your device supports the ical format. For a list of known supported devices and instructions for setting it up go here: http://www.google.com/support/mobile/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=174827

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8. Can I use Outlook?

Yes. Google has a special add-on you can use to sync your Google Calendar to Outlook. More info can be found here: Sync with Microsoft Outlook

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9. Do I need to do anything?

WITS will have special support offerings to help the transition from Oracle Calendar to the new Google Calendar implementation. For now simply be aware that the transition is coming and limit your long-term meeting/event scheduling in Oracle Calendar.

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10. Can I save or archive my old Oracle Calendar data?

Yes. The database goes back about 12months into your appointment history. Here are instructions if you wish to archive your old Oracle Calendar Data.

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