Show Your Outlook Calendar On Desktop with Desktask

Karl L. Gechlik 14-02-2009

show outlook calendar on desktopI live by my Outlook calendar and tasks. I guess you already knew that if you read my last article entitled Want A No-Nonsense Web Editable Printable Checklist? Printable Checklist : A No-Nonsense Online Checklist Creator Read More


I sync my Windows Mobile device with my machine and now I can also have a quick overview of my upcoming events and tasks on my desktop. I found this neat little application called DeskTask.

DeskTask is compatible with Windows 2000, XP and Vista. It also needs Microsoft Outlook 2000 / XP / 2003 / or 2007 Beta 2 to function.

DeskTask reads your Calendar and Task information and puts it where it is the most useful. You can think of this as a desk blotter calendar for your computer’s desktop! Are you with me?

So how do you make it show Outlook calendar on your desktop?

After you install it you will see that your Outlook items are now on your desktop like you can see below. Depending on the options you configure – you can click on an item and go directly to it in Outlook, for me this is a HUGE time saver!


outlook calendar on desktop

You simply install the 570KB file from here (direct download link). When you are finished installing you will have a new system tray icon that you can see in the shot below. By right clicking on this icon you can also hide it, lock its position, restore its last position or open your Outlook, calendar or tasks windows with a single click.


By this time your  Outlook data is already on the desktop. It appears by default in the upper left hand corner of your desktop. But you can customize it and move it around. We will get to that in a minute. Let’s first take a look at the control panel options for our new little app.



Most of the options are pretty self explanatory. But I unchecked the “Do not refresh data if a full screen application is detected”. I always want my tasks/item updated on my desktop. This will obviously use more memory – but if you have it to spare”¦ Why the heck not!


As you make any changes to the font, size, transparency or any of the other options you can see them reflected immediately on the right hand preview pane. I like this feature and think more programs should incorporate a preview like this.



In this next section as you can see above you get to pick what is displayed. So if you use your tasks for personal things and you don’t want “Buy Tampons” or  “Grab Magnum Wraps” to appear on your desktop uncheck the appropriate box!

You also get to choose if you want past items displayed and how many days in the future you want DeskTask to look at.



When you get everything the way you like it and return to your desktop, you will probably want to relocate your new desktop module. It is as simple as dragging and dropping. You just need to catch the calendar icon with a left click and hold it as you move it where you want it to go.


Then let go! And it has a new home. That’s it, now you have your Tasks Outlook calendar on the desktop! Do you a have a creative use for your desktop that you want to share with other MakeUseOf readers? If you do put us on in the comments!

Related topics: Calendar, Microsoft Outlook, Task Management.

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  1. Leenesh
    February 16, 2009 at 7:10 am

    I want a calendar that highlights the holidays in a colour I chose. That way I can get rid of the cardboard calendar that I always refer to for the upcoming holidays. Outlook does highlight the holidays I add to it, but it highlights it the same way as the all my other events in my calendar, so you don't know which are the holidays. Anybody know?

  2. Alain
    February 15, 2009 at 10:05 pm

    Rainlendar works much better (it is also cross-platform and skinnable).

    I have Rainlendar, Rainmeter (specially with HUD.Vision skins) and Stickies on my desktop, using Wallperizer to change wallpapers when I want to; ObjectDock with Tray Docklet for entirely replace the taskbar; and Shine vista visual style.

    • Andrew Jordan
      February 16, 2009 at 11:40 am

      I also have rainlendar but it takes up a lot of cpu and it interferes with synchpst from another computer when i try to synch from my laptop to my desktop outlook. The desktop outlook must always be closed for this to work and rainlenar keeps it open.I then have to come into the desktop office close rainlendar and go back to the living room and sync.I am hoping this will work.

    • Aibek
      February 18, 2009 at 5:28 am

      We actually covered Rainlendar earlier [Broken Link Removed]