Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Unable to Delete All Data in a Google Calendar

So let's say you're testing your calendar insertion (a prudent step which we not only endorse but require).  You either have a large calendar or run several insertions to put in over 40,000 items.  I suspect the problem starts with 32K objects, just because we are so suspiciously close to a magic binary number.
You go into your settings with the hope of deleting all data from your test account (and please make sure it is a test account):

You select Delete giving you this dialog box:

Where you promise you REALLY REALLY DO want to Delete all events, and click the Delete all events button.

Less than 60 seconds later you see the following dialog box and all your data is still in the calendar.

We do not seem to be alone.  We posted this on Google Calendar's Help Forum (whose only value has been confirmation from another user with the same problem). None of our current clients are going to hit this limit unless they do multiple insertions without practicing calendar hygiene.  

So practice calendar hygiene.

But we do want to get this out as a warning to everyone.

Addition on March 3, 2015: This post is now hugely popular.  So if there are folk out there who want to take an entire Exchange server of calendar data (we're talking an enterprise here) into Google calendar, and keep all the meetings live, let us know.  We've done Exchange to Exchange that way but will only add the Exchange to Google capability if we have a real customer.


zyg said...

And for something not completly different. You can delete all entries in the calendar (you can do it either manually or with a macro) and STILL you cannot delete all items in the calendar via Settings. Let's be careful out there, people.

zyg said...

For some odd reason this is an INCREDIBLY popular post lately (September 2014). Any of you guys want to share WHY?

Unknown said...

I have the same problem with my calendar - trying to delete all events. I'm guessing it's a popular post right now because Google ended support for their calendar sync program, so folks like me are working on switching to a new solution and possibly trying to clear out their Google Calendar for a fresh start with a new sync option.

zyg said...

Interesting case, so there is demand for something that would clear out a Google calendar in this predicament. But demand does not a market make -- would anybody be willing to pay to clean a calendar out? And if so -- how much?
I mean -- at the other extreme we could easily (for us anyway) migrate an entire company's Google calendars to an Exchange or Office 365 domain -- but that's a different issue.