Productivity Windows

7 Ways to Make Google Calendar Your Windows Desktop Calendar

Dan Price Updated 27-01-2020

Thankfully, the “calendar wars” of Windows 8 are in the past. It’s once again possible to operate your diary using built-in Windows tools.


But just because you can use the Windows app, it doesn’t mean you should. You have options! Depending on your workflow, some of them might even be preferable to using the default Windows 10 Calendar app.

Here’s a look at seven ways to view Google Calendar on your Windows desktop. Unfortunately, there’s no official Google Calendar app for Windows

1. How to Add Google Calendar to the Windows Calendar App

To add your Google Calendar to the Windows Calendar app, do the following:

  1. Click Start and find the Calendar app and open it.
  2. To add your Google account, click Settings (gear icon, bottom left-hand corner) > Manage Accounts > Add Account.
  3. The app will prompt you to select your account provider. Google is listed as one of the options. Click Google and fill in your credentials.
  4. Click Next and Windows will take care of the rest.

manage accounts on windows calendar app

You should now see all your Google Calendars listed under “Gmail” in the left-hand panel of the app’s main screen. You can edit appointments and add new entries in the standard way.


Note: The calendar app is bundled with the mail app in the Microsoft Store.

2. Create a Browser Bookmark

Another obvious method is to add a bookmark to your browser.

If you’re using Microsoft Edge, navigate to your Google Calendar, click the Star icon in the address bar, select where you want to save the link, and hit Add.

For easy access, you can make your Favorites Bar visible at all times. Go to Settings > View Favorites Settings > Show Favorites Bar and toggle the switch to On.


edge show favourites bar

If you’re on Chrome, the process is even better. Head to the Chrome Web Store and install the Calendar app. It will let you access your calendar from the Apps link within the browser or the Chrome App Launcher in your taskbar.

Once you’ve added a shortcut, make sure you try combining Google Calendar and Tasks Google Calendar + Tasks Is the Only To-Do List You'll Ever Need Why not keep your to-do list and your calendar in one place? Google Calendar and Google Tasks solve this problem. Read More for even great productivity.

3. Create a Google Calendar Shortcut Using Chrome

If you’ve followed the previous steps and installed the Calendar app from the Chrome Web Store, it’s easy to add a link to your Windows desktop or taskbar.


Open Chrome’s app menu by clicking Apps in the Bookmark Bar or typing chrome://apps/ into the address bar. Locate the app, right-click on the icon, and choose Create Shortcuts.

create shortcut on desktop in chrome

A new window will ask you to confirm your decision. Click Create and return to your desktop. You should now see a shortcut.

If you don’t like a cluttered desktop, you can right-click on the shortcut and select either Pin to Taskbar or Pin to Start. You can then delete the desktop shortcut.


4. Add Your Google Calendar to Outlook

If you have a copy of Outlook installed on your machine, you can import your Google Calendars into the app. If done correctly, you’ll never need to use the Google web app.

Note: You need to repeat this process for each individual calendar in your Google account.

Firstly, you need to grab your Google Calendar’s private ICAL web address (it’s one of the ways you can share your Google Calendar with anyone How to Share Your Google Calendar With Anyone We show you three options for sharing your Google Calendar. Using iCal, even Apple Calendar and Outlook users can view your schedule. We also explain how to revoke access to your Google Calendar. Read More ). Log into your Google Calendar and navigate to My Calendars > [Calendar Name] > More > Settings and Sharing.

Scroll down to Integrate calendar and copy the Secret address in ICAL format address.

google calendar ical format address

Next, fire up Outlook and go to File > Account Settings > Account Settings. In the new window, follow internet Calendars > New and paste the ICAL address from Google.

add calendar to outlook desktop app

You’ll now see some subscription options. Give the calendar a suitable name, customize the other choices to suit your requirements, and click OK.

You can find your freshly-added agenda by clicking on the Calendar icon in the bottom left-hand corner of Outlook’s main window. You can also use third party apps to sync Microsoft Outlook with Google Calendar 7 Tools to Sync Microsoft Outlook With Google Calendar To sync Outlook Calendar with Google, you need good tools. We show you the best ones to keep both calendars in sync. Read More .

5. Use the Outlook Web App

If you don’t have the Outlook desktop app and rely on the web app instead Microsoft Outlook Web Vs. Desktop: Which One Is Best for You? is a powerful online email client that comes free with Office Online. But can Outlook on the web compete with its desktop counterpart? Our Outlook comparison will help you decide for yourself. Read More , don’t worry. It’s still possible to add your Google Calendar.

Repeat the above steps until you get your calendar’s secret ICAL address. Next, open the web app and go to App Menu (top left-hand corner) > Calendar.

To add your Google Calendar, click on Discover Calendars in the left-hand pane. In the new window, select From Web in the bottom right-hand corner.

Finally, paste the copied ICAL address and give the calendar a name.

add ical calendar to outlook web app

6. Mailbird

Mailbird is one of the best desktop email clients The 5 Best Free Email Clients for Your Desktop PC Want the best free email client? We've compiled the best email software for Windows, Mac, and Linux that won't cost you a dime. Read More . You can easily use it as a Google Calendar app for Windows,

The free version of the app can sync with any IMAP or POP email service and can integrate with several other productivity services like Dropbox and Google Drive. On the downside, it can only support three accounts.

If you pay the one-off fee of $59, you can add unlimited email accounts and will unlock new features such as a unified inbox, an email snooze button, and support for a quick preview of attachments.

7. Calendar Sync

calendar sync google email app

The previous approaches all leave your Google Calendar and your Outlook calendar as separate entities, even if they’re both accessible via the same app. The free Calendar Sync tool can merge your Outlook and Google Calendars together, thus giving you one unified agenda.

You choose a one-way sync or a two-way sync and determine how often you want the sync process to run.

The free version will only keep events for 30 days. The $10 pro version will keep your appointments forever and adds extra features such as multiple profiles, a way to skip reminders, multi-calendar syncing, and synchronized categories.

How Do You Access Google Calendar?

We’ve shown you seven ways to access your Google Calendar from your Windows desktop, but the list is not exhaustive. If you have an alternative approach you can share with your fellow readers, share it in the comments box below.

And remember, you can also sync Google Calendar with the Windows taskbar and pre-fill holidays with free calendars. The process is easier than you might think.

Considering a different calendar? Check out these free online calendars, these Google Calendar alternatives for time management, or some of the best calendar apps in the Microsoft Store The 7 Best Calendar Apps in the Microsoft Store The calendar is an app now and easier to use. Here's a list of the best calendar apps for Windows for your convenience. Read More .

Related topics: Calendar, Google Calendar, Microsoft Outlook, Windows 10, Windows Calendar.

Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.

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  1. Mark Stone
    January 31, 2020 at 9:28 am

    Desktop iCalendar is another option to put Google calendar and Google Task on the desktop.

  2. deviceguru
    May 20, 2019 at 3:07 am

    1. install the free playcalendar app found in the windows software store in win 10.
    2. run playcalendar and login to your google acct
    3. done!

  3. Jane Wilson
    April 9, 2019 at 4:07 pm

    As far as I can see there is no way to get the Calendar onto a Windows desktop as an app so I can't create a short cut which is really frustrating. I have other apps - doc etc but when you go to Chrome store there isn't an App, only an extension....
    Is this right?

  4. Mark
    March 5, 2019 at 6:18 am

    THis is entirley useless for google reminders. I don't Mean Google Keep, I don't mean tasks. I MEAN REMINDERS!!!! NOT POSSIBLE IN 2018 on an f ing PC!!!!

  5. John
    January 31, 2019 at 5:01 pm

    Doesn't work Windows 10 computer tells me that my Google is out of synch. Requests login and pwd for Google acct which I provide. It sysnchs, then 15 seconds later goes thru the same procedure.

    One of the things it does is unchecks my Google account -- always. Thus unless I go thru the synch procedure every 15 seconds, I have no Google Calendar using the Windows 10 clendar app.

  6. Pandas
    January 8, 2019 at 5:53 pm

    Thanks, I did not know you could link your Google Calander to the windows calendar. Good stuff.

  7. Glen Lee
    August 30, 2018 at 1:51 pm

    Wow, I find your info the same as in other searches but to no avail, it only tells me it has problems and need to be fixed, so I say ok fix it. That is a loop I get, problems and ok to fix.

  8. pjcamp
    August 27, 2018 at 9:02 pm

    I hate to point this out but NONE of these put the calendar on the desktop. All of them involve remembering to open something to check your calendar.

  9. Hung John
    May 16, 2018 at 12:06 pm

    I recommend to use calendardc app. Easy to use and sync between pc and mobile

  10. Gordon Langridge
    January 5, 2018 at 8:20 pm

    Note of warning.
    Google calendar events more than six moths in the future, won't show up on your PC calendar - I nearly double booked something before checking the calendar online.
    It's been discussed:
    Very frustrating.

  11. Brian James
    December 7, 2017 at 7:08 pm

    From the non-existence of directions to make google calendar my default in Windows 10k, I'm assuming MicroS doesn't allow t

    I've asked numerous search engines this question and it's verboten since the question never gets answered; it's like living in a passive aggressive culture.

  12. Jeremy
    October 30, 2017 at 6:19 pm
  13. Chris Hickman
    September 11, 2017 at 3:53 am

    Rainlendar is excellent and cross platform. runs on your desktop and is always there.

    • Greg
      July 30, 2018 at 11:16 pm

      No mobile app

      • Chris Hickman
        July 31, 2018 at 6:30 am

        Topic of the article is how you use it on your desktop.

        I use the Google Calendar app on my phone and use the widget on my android home page.

        Rainlendar is my desktop widget for my PC! It's great and it's bizarre to me that it's the only solution I have found that adequately reproduces the same instant accessibility I have on my phone.

  14. Tuttle
    August 29, 2017 at 5:24 pm

    A previous MUO articles tells me how to make gmail act like a desktop app. I loved it.... Until i saw silly calendar viewer. How could I add Google Calendar as a tab feature to that now desktop app gmail? (Be it tab, or even better a larger view pane on gmail.)

    Like Thunderbird does. (Screen shoot of how thunderbird created tab.

    Thank you these MUO articles have been helpful thus far.

  15. Peter
    August 18, 2017 at 12:38 am

    Often getting "simple" suggestions / instructions re windows 8.1 which would be fine if steps were accurate.
    First step above was to add an account to windows calendar - guess what? No "Settings" icon on the calendar program, right click does not bring this option at all. No place to start, no place to go. :(

    • Sheldon Swartz
      December 30, 2018 at 3:11 pm

      You are correct. The author is not an American. Perhaps it works in his country., but not here.

      The misinformation on the Internet it unbelievable.

  16. Edward Cray
    July 31, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    This is an excellent read thank you so much! Exactly what I was looking for and has sorted all my problems

  17. Lala
    May 16, 2017 at 9:36 am

    Excellent! Just what I needed. Thank you :)

  18. Graham
    April 20, 2017 at 3:40 pm

    I couldn't figure out how to do it.

    My google calendar already had 3 calendars in there, but I wanted to add another gmail one from another android phone. Couldn't figure it out, maybe you can tell us?


  19. Sue
    February 12, 2017 at 3:50 pm

    On my desktop I use Clean Google Calendar. Since my work uses Outlook, I sync Outlook and Google with Outlook4Gmail.

    • Tina Sieber
      February 15, 2017 at 9:55 am

      Thanks for mentioning Clean Google Calendar, Sue. Looks like a useful Chrome extension.

      Why did you need to purchase Outlook4Gmail? Can't you access Gmail via POP or IMAP in Outlook? When you add your Gmail account, it should also add your Google Calendar to Outlook. Not sure about contacts, though.

  20. Bob Martin
    February 5, 2017 at 10:29 am

    Good article. I found parts of it very useful.

    • Tina Sieber
      February 15, 2017 at 9:52 am

      Now I'm curious which parts you found most useful, Bob. Thanks for your comment!

  21. Kai
    February 2, 2017 at 10:41 am

    I use gSyncit - meanwhile since years without any problems!

    • Tina Sieber
      February 15, 2017 at 9:51 am

      Thank you for sharing gSyncit for Outlook, Kai. Unfortunately, it's not a free app.

  22. Lucid thinker
    February 2, 2017 at 5:48 am

    I use Miracal,a windows desktop app. It is simple solution that allows viewing and creating entries into Google calendars. I can't believe you did not include it.

  23. Chris Stewart
    February 1, 2017 at 10:01 pm

    Very poor advice to have users punch their Google login details into a shady freeware app!

    • Tina Sieber
      February 15, 2017 at 9:49 am

      Chris, which app do you mean? GMinder, Calendar Sync, or both?

      • Jack
        January 24, 2018 at 3:40 pm

        Gminder, that piece of shit malware that hijacks your computer

  24. citizen erased
    February 1, 2017 at 8:12 pm

    Great article. I use the Windows app but am always looking for alternatives.