Personal Data Manager

Tutorial – CalDAV/CardDAV

Article from Issue 235/2020
Author(s):

You can manage your calendars and address books with the CalDAV/CardDAV standards, Nextcloud, and a few open source tools.

If you keep a digital calendar or address book, you want your data to be stored in one central location and accessible from any device, wherever and whenever you need it. You also want ownership of your data and metadata. By using free and open source software (FOSS), you can create calendars and address books in a private cloud that allows you to synchronize and share that data, without being locked into some corporate, data-harvesting walled garden.

In this tutorial, I will explain the open standards, CalDAV and CardDAV, that make independent storing and sharing of calendar and address book data possible. Then, I will show you how to automatically import or export calendars and contacts, from any source, to a Nextcloud instance, process that data, and migrate it to another server. Finally, I will outline how to set up your own standalone calendar and address book.

CalDAV/CardDAV

CalDAV and CardDAV, the open standards that allow centralized storage and management of personal data, are both supersets of the Web Distributed Authoring and Versioning (WebDAV) system. WebDAV's specification describes how software programs can edit remote content over the Internet, using the same protocol (HTTP) that browsers use to load pages from websites. CalDav is the WebDAV extension for calendars, and CardDAV is the extension for personal contacts.

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