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Hiding details of all or some appointments and meetings

When co-workers plan a meeting and are looking at free/busy times, they can see the details of any appointment if they hover the mouse pointer over the appointment.

Is there a way to block that?

To prevent them from seeing details via Free/Busy, you can either publish your appointment as Private or you can change the permissions on your Calendar folder.

Mark an appointment as private

If you only want to block certain individual appointments from showing their contents when someone schedules a meeting with you or opens your Calendar folder, then you can mark an appointment as private.

To do this, double click on the appointment or meeting to open it in its own window and choose:

  • Outlook 2003 and previous
    File-> Properties-> Sensitivity: Private
  • Outlook 2007
    In the Options group on the Appointment or Meeting tab, click the “Private” button with the lock icon.
  • Outlook 2010 and Outlook 2013
    In the Tags group on the Appointment or Meeting tab, click the “Private” button with the lock icon.

In Outlook 2003 and previous, all Private items will show with a key icon in the Calendar: Private item key icon
In Outlook 2007, Outlook 2010 and Outlook 2013, all Private items will show with a lock icon in the Calendar: Private item lock icon

Note: In Outlook 2010 and Outlook 2013, this command is also available on the Meeting tab when you select the item in the Calendar folder so you won’t have to open the item first via a double click.

Change permissions

In Outlook 2007, Outlook 2010 and Outlook 2013 you can change the permissions on your Calendar folder to not expose the details for any appointment or meeting via Free/Busy. Currently it is probably set to “Free/Busy time, subject, location”.

  1. Right click your calendar folder and choose Properties.
  2. Select the Permissions tab.
  3. In the Name list select Default.
  4. Change its Permissions Level to “Free/Busy time”.
  5. Press OK to close the dialog.

Optionally:
Via the “Add…” button, you can add some colleagues or your manager to still allow them to see some more details. Anyone else would just see your availability times.

Calendar Permissions - Default - Permission Level: Free/Busy time
Prevent someone from seeing your whereabouts or hints about any of
your appointments by its subject or location information by setting
the Permission Level for “Default” to Free/Busy time.