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Push Outlook beyond your computer with gSyncit

A tool for syncing your Outlook data with online services.

by Office Watch

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gSyncit is an option for pushing your Outlook data, calendar, contacts, tasks and notes to online services. This is important because it lets you access that Outlook info on other devices like the iPhone or Android smartphones with updates copied automatically.

It came to our attention courtesy of Office Watch reader, Tyson D. He was looking for a way to sync his iPhone with Outlook. Apple’s new iCloud service is useless. Google Calendar Sync only syncs Outlook appointments with Google’s Calendar free service.

gSyncit offers both one-way or two-way sync between Outlook and the Google services. One-way sync means only changes made in Outlook will be copied online while two-way sync means that changes made online or on linked devices will make their way back to Outlook automatically.

You can also use gSyncit to keep multiple copies of Outlook up to date, though you’ll need a license for each copy of Outlook.

Whenever you try one of these sync services, it’s a good idea to make a copy of the folders that will be synchronized. That’s because the most common problem is duplication of entries during the initial sync. Once that first connection is sorted out, ongoing replication should be OK.

Tyson did report one setup difficulty with gSyncit.

gSyncit actually works great - the problem was that all of my Outlook contacts had the country/region field set to "United States of America" explicitly. Since I live in the USA, that is also the "default"

country/region for my installation of Outlook. I'm guessing that since the field was set, gSyncit (and the MS Exchange ActiveSync link) was trying to set the field in Gmail/Google Contacts as well as on the iPhone. Needless to say, this caused problems in the way Outlook displayed the contacts once they made a full "round-trip" sync. I cleaned up my Outlook contacts (removed the "United States of America" country/region field) and everything works great. At $20, gSyncit is a great deal for syncing Outlook to Gmail - it also syncs calendars as well as to other services.

There are better ways to sync Outlook with online storage and other devices, but these require an ongoing subscription. If you’re looking for a low-cost, one time payment solution than gSyncit is worth a look.

gSyncit can also sync with other online services, for example connecting Outlook notes with the wonderful Evernote service.

Thanks to Tyson for his input.

gSyncit requires a Google Calendar account and Outlook 2002 (XP), 2003, 2007 or 2010 (32 and 64 bit). A limited free trial download is available. Price US$20.

Article posted: Monday, 21 November 2011

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