The previous article in this series outlined the reasons for migrating to MyKolab from Google Apps GMail. In this article I’ll outline how to migrate contacts and calendars from GMail to MyKolab, and also how to connect to MyKolab using iOS devices.
Getting data out of Google
To its credit, Google makes it relatively painless to extract your data from its systems. Mind you, the NSA would probably say much the same thing.
Contacts and Calendars were the easiest to export and import, so I’ll start the documentation with them.
Exporting Google Contacts
Exporting Gmail contacts is done via the GMail web interface and the process is well covered by Google’s support pages. It’s a case of exporting a text file and then uploading it into MyKolab via its web interface. The only caveat is to ensure that the vCard format option is selected, “vCard format (for importing into Apple Address Book or another application)”, as this is the format that Kolab is happiest to handle.
One thing to note is that GMail adds a contact record for pretty much everyone you’ve ever emailed so if you’ve used Google for any length of time then the contact records in your export file may contain a number of email addresses that you’ll struggle to recall having any interaction with. I’ll be removing my contacts from Google Apps once I have sufficient trust in MyKolab. I guess if everything goes wrong then I could always ask the NSA for their backups of my data.
Exporting Google Calendars
As with contacts, the process for exporting Google Calendar is through the web interface and, again, is well documented. Again, a text file is created, saved to hard drive and then uploaded into the MyKolab web interface.
Each calendar must be exported separately which, if your account has a number of individual calendars, is a bit of a chore.
Connecting to MyKolab Calendars and Contacts on iPhone and iPad
Don’t make the mistake I made by ignoring the documentation and assuming that iOS Configuration for iPhones and iPads merely requires setting up one account on your iOS device in order to connect to MyKolab email, calendars and contacts. On iOS devices, MyKolab uses ActiveSync for connecting to calendars and contacts so you’ll need to set up one account for ActiveSync (labelled on iOS as ‘Microsoft Exchange’) and a second account for MyKolab email.
Less success with Mac clients
One area I did find a bit amiss was connecting to MyKolab with Mac OS X 10.6.8 clients, specifically Address Book and iCal.
iCal connects using CalDav and whilst Calendar entries show correctly in iCal and entries appear to be saved correctly, when iCal makes a poll of the server it comes back with an error message complaining about an incorrect URL. Not a deal breaker but a bit annoying.
As for connecting with Address Book, I gave up on that; MyKolab is supposed to allow the use of CardDav to connect but I didn’t have much luck. Support for CalDav and CardDav is still in beta so it’s probably a question of returning to this at some point in the future.
In the next article, I’ll describe migrating email from GMail to MyKolab.