Fucking Apple

Dear Lazyweb, why don't ICS feeds in Calendar.app ever update automatically any more? View / Refresh Calendars works, but only manually.

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27 Responses:

  1. dzm says:

    Works for me. A calendar I subscribe to, an .ics file hosted by Google, tells me it last auto-updated Jan 14, 2022 at 11:12:51AM. It is configured to auto-update weekly.

    I'll subscribe to your .ics and verify that it auto-updates (or not).

    • jwz says:

      I figured I was going to hear this. I've tried deleting and re-adding it. I've tried having the feed be both "On My Mac" and "iCloud". Same shit.

    • dzm says:

      Welp ...

      I have subscribed to the DNA Lounge calendar. I asked for five minute updates.

      "Last Updated" tells me that it last updated at 12:35:06pm. Little Snitch tells me that the Calendar Agent last talked to dnalounge.com 3 minutes ago (12:53pm). I suspect that the "Last Updated" field is reflecting the last time new content was found and the displayed calendar was updated and not the last time DNA Lounge was asked for a fresh copy of the .ics file.

      • dzm says:

        And just now Lil' Snitch showed activity from Calendar Agent to dnalounge.com. Port 443. And my Calendar.app still shows 12:35 as the last update.

      • jwz says:

        It may be that the time displayed is not the last probe time, but it is also the case that I am seeing the calendar not updating actual changes unless I do it manually.

        • dzm says:

          Dunno, man. Lil' Snitch shows a ~5 min heartbeat of Calendar Agent reaching out to you. The "Last updated" field has been updated to "1:10:40 PM".

          So - tl;dr: Mine appears to be asking the server for updates on a time frame that honors the configured refresh value. The "Last updated" field seems to be pure fiction, or get updated only in some weird "whenever I feel like it" schedule.

          • jwz says:

            Ok, so Little Snitch shows CalendarAgent contacting DNA Lounge on the proper schedule -- but it still doesn't fucking update. E.g., yesterday afternoon, the Syzygyx show was cancelled, and therefore removed from the ICS feed, and yet this morning it was still displayed on my calendar until I manually refreshed.

            This happens every time.

            And it looks like my subscription in the calendar app on my iPhone (which I rarely use) hasn't updated the DNA Lounge calendar since September.

            • dzm says:

              Huh. In my (newly subscribed) DNA Lounge calendar there are no entries for Syzygyx.

              If you'd be so kind, please update here (or email me, or something) next time you make a change so I can see if the change propagates to my Calendar.app

              Also - Fucking Apple. This shouldn't be this opaque and hard.

              • jwz says:

                In a minute, I will make a change to tomorrow's Bootie event. I'm about to add the sentence "Is this thing on?" to the end of the blurb.

                • jwz says:

                  Update has happened, and is reflected in the VEVENT's sequence number:

                  -DTSTAMP:20220110T100051Z
                  -SEQUENCE:4
                  +DTSTAMP:20220114T221703Z
                  +SEQUENCE:5

                  • jwz says:

                    Aaaaaaaannnnnnd this time macOS Calendar updated for me, all by itself.

                    Maybe the problem is only with event deletions? The oldest event in the ICS right now is the Jan 7 Hellcat show, and that should fall off tomorrow.

                    My iPhone still won't update the calendar at all.

                  • dzm says:

                    (Replying here since "reply" link is missing from your next message)

                    Weird. Let me know if you want to try creating and entry and then deleting it.Day Job beckons, but I should be free in another half hour or so.

                  • jwz says:

                    Some time last night, the Jan 7 show dropped off the calendar, and my desktop calendar correctly reflects that, so, WTF.

                • dzm says:

                  I changed nothing in the calendar. I opened the event and verified the text is not there.

                  I waited until I see in Lil' Snitch that Calendar Agent reached out to you. I re-opened the entry (I have NOT exited and re-launched Calendar.app). I now see "Is this thing on?" after "Must be 18" and before "Buy tickets". So it appears to have correctly updated and reflected the content change.

                  The "Last Updated" text now indicates 2:17:40, which is ... 180 seconds ago. And that aligns with Lil' Snitch's report on when the last traffic flowed.

              • jwz says:

                When you were testing this stuff, was your subscription to the DNA calendar showing up under "iCloud" or under "Other"?

                On my iPhone, I unsubscribed from the DNA calendar under "subscriptions" and when I re-added it, it showed up under "iCloud" and started working. Presumably this means that the calendar daemon isn't contacting DNA Lounge through HTTP directly, but is filtering it through Apple's servers and then getting it via... CalDAV maybe? Or some private Apple iCloud protocol?

                • dzm says:

                  The calendar was in the "iCloud" section on macOS.

                  I can't speak to what that means for iOS but on the Mac Calendar Agent is hitting http://www.dnalounge.com over HTTPS every 5 minutes. Annoyingly it's STILL hitting http://www.dnalounge.com every five minutes even though I unsubbed from the feed ~24 hours ago.

                  • jwz says:

                    Well we weren't testing the same thing then, as mine was in "Other". Woooo.

                  • dzm says:

                    Now subbed to "On my Mac" (which drops it in the Calendar UI to the "Other" section). I'll keep an eye on Lil' Snitch to see where the requests seem to go every five minutes.

                  • dzm says:

                    I can't say I see any behavior that looks different to me. Here are the Calendar.app and CalendarAgent hits to both iCloud and DNALounge servers over the last few hours (stripping out path data for the apps since it's repetitive and not needed). Overall impressions - "Five minutes" is aspirational, but the agent IS reaching out at a semi-regular interval and IS pulling a bunch of bytes over HTTPS. I note a single hit from Calendar.app, and all the rest are from CalendarAgent.

                    2022-01-17T19:36:10Z,out,504,17.248.245.19,p08-calendars.icloud.com,6,443,2,0,32256,1852,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:36:10Z,out,504,17.248.245.19,p31-caldav.icloud.com,6,443,2,0,34800,22902,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:36:10Z,out,504,17.248.245.19,calendars.icloud.com,6,443,2,0,32268,1750,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:36:20Z,out,504,17.248.245.19,p31-caldav.icloud.com,6,443,0,0,4652,10996,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:36:30Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,73168,1874,"Calendar",
                    2022-01-17T19:36:40Z,out,504,17.248.245.19,p08-calendars.icloud.com,6,443,0,0,16520,632,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:36:40Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,73168,1874,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:36:40Z,out,504,17.248.245.19,p31-caldav.icloud.com,6,443,0,0,2162,7746,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:36:40Z,out,504,17.248.245.19,calendars.icloud.com,6,443,0,0,16532,530,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:37:10Z,out,504,17.248.245.19,p08-calendars.icloud.com,6,443,0,0,0,62,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:37:10Z,out,504,17.248.245.19,p31-caldav.icloud.com,6,443,0,0,0,62,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:37:10Z,out,504,17.248.245.19,calendars.icloud.com,6,443,0,0,0,62,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:42:50Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,73106,1812,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:43:00Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,0,0,62,62,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:48:50Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,73106,1812,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:49:00Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,0,0,62,62,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:54:30Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,10078,1286,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T19:54:40Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,0,0,63090,588,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T20:00:00Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,73168,1874,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T20:06:50Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,73106,1812,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T20:07:00Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,0,0,62,62,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T20:12:40Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,39140,1812,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T20:12:50Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,0,0,34028,62,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T20:18:10Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,73168,1874,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T20:24:20Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,73106,1812,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T20:24:30Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,0,0,62,62,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T21:30:00Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,2,0,68100,1812,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T21:30:01Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,0,0,5006,0,"CalendarAgent",
                    2022-01-17T21:30:05Z,out,504,3.16.178.106,www.dnalounge.com,6,443,0,0,62,62,"CalendarAgent",

    • tfb says:

      'Works for me' may seem like it's the appropriate term: as a result of some unknown function of your entire past history it might seem to work, for you, today.

      I'm here to tell you that it's more complicated. I have subscribed ics calendars which work; ones which work sometimes, and ones which don't work at all. To be precise, I have three calendars I subscribe to and it seems that there is some complex exclusion principle which means that I can, through a process of chicken-waving, pick one which works after which the partly-working wnd not-working-at-all will be unpredictably distributed amongst the others. I used to have more than three and I can no longer recall what the rules were in that case.

      Trying to understand what fuckery Apple have imposed on us this week must be like how the early quantum mechanics people felt. Except quantum mechanics makes sense.

      • jwz says:

        I too have experienced the three-body quantum-calendar problem.

        I can tell you for sure, though, if you are thinking "maybe I should try logging out of iCloud and back in", DON'T DO IT. It will take all of your "On My Mac" calendars and upload them to iCloud and sorting the resulting mess out will take fucking forever. And also it won't fix anything.

  2. Dave Polaschek says:

    On my iPad, I am forced to”pull down to refresh” for all calendars, even the shared family calendar I share with my sweetie (when she tells me she’s added something, or I get a notification of an addition on my iPhone, which is subscribed to the same calendar). Same configuration works on my iPhone, but I suspect there’s some old setting that’s no longer available, similar to the setting to change the sound made when sending a text message, which no longer exists in the settings application, but a changed value made a decade ago is still honored (my iPhone has a sound which is played when I send a text message, even when I have the switch on the side of the phone set to the “silent mode” setting).

    • jwz says:

      On my iPhone, it hasn't updated the DNA calendar since September, and when I pull down to refresh, it takes like a minute and then adds a line after the calendar list saying "Unable to connect to the internet."

      Copying the URL from Calendar and pasting it into Safari works just fine, of course.

      • Dave Polaschek says:

        Huh. Mine will update fine _if I pull down to update_ but won’t update on its own.

        But for “unable to connect to internet,” I wonder if you have cellular data off for Calendar or something wacky like that.

        Of course it could just be “f’in Apple.”

  3. Apple peaked in, what, 2007? It's been downhill after Snow Leopard.

    I had to reboot my phone to get some iMessage features to actually work. My airpods sometimes take three tries to turn on. It seems like a miracle that anything works at all.

    • pmc says:

      1992, but that's quibbling. Your point - in decline - stands. It used to be Apple-the-company made ergonomics a big deal. No longer!

  4. kc says:

    I have this problem intermittently and, at least on my system, it's fixed by deleting the iCal cache and preferences files. It occurs maybe once a year or so...

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