In a small three-user environment running Outlook 2007 on Exchange 2010, all users previously just used one user's calendar as their main calendar. New employee #4 has been set up with his own calendar per the owner's request, they use colored categories for their calendar events, and his categorized activities are not showing up as colored on the other users' Outlook calendars - only his own. What settings should I look at to enable the correct color coding again?

Calendar screenshot

  • Maybe these categories are not in your Master Category List? – thims Jul 15 '11 at 12:11
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    To add more detail to this: an outlook item (whether an appointment, task, email etc) stores categories as simple text strings. If I have a category called "holiday" and colour it green, but you colour your "holiday" items red, you would see mine in red. This is especially important for meetings when I send you an invite and you can then see that in your colour scheme, regardless of mine. If I use a category of "Projects" and you have no such category, you won't see colours for those items. – AdamV Jul 19 '11 at 11:18

I've found that if a user renames the default categories or in any way uses the default colors for their own custom categories it will not color in the items on the calendar. Everyone must use the default color scheme or all use the same custom categories. Maybe by pushing them out to all OL clients.


I just extensively tested this, and it should show the category colors, but I tested with Owner's permissions. I suggest that you test with Owner's permissions just to make sure you do not have any other issue. Once you change them, close and re-open Outlook, and close and re-open the shared calendar too, just in case. I am not 100% sure if you need to really close and re-open, but better to be sure.

I did back the permissions off, and with just Free/Busy, I did not see the colors.

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