Knowledge - Details
Date Added: 11/11/2022
Problem: Many people mess up their iPhone's contact list when they have Apple's iCloud Contacts enabled while also using a 3rd party contact list, such as Office 365 or Google. When contacts get created in multiple different accounts, it leads to duplicates, missing contacts, and syncing confusion between devices. I recommend everyone save all their contacts to a single service only. Fix: Merge the iCloud contacts into your Office 365 account and stop using iCloud Contacts. Steps: These are just the basic steps, leaving out a few details. Do it at your own risk and only if you know how to recover from problems. Definitely back up your contact lists from both source and destination before attempting so you can restore things if anything goes wrong. 0) Back up your Office 365 contacts first in case something goes wrong. I recommend doing it as a PST file and also as a CSV. Your iCloud contacts will be backed up a few steps below. Store both of those backups as long as needed. 1) Log into www.icloud.com. 2) On the Contacts page, click the icon at the bottom left corner. 3) choose "Select All" 4) choose "export as VCard" 5) Save that vcard file somewhere on your computer. 6) Since Outlook fails to import VCard files containing more than one contact, we have to use Windows Contacts as a middle man. Go to this folder: C:\Users\%username%\Contacts 7) Click Import on that window and select the VCard file. 8) It will pop up a window, one at a time, for EACH contact in that vcard file. For the most part, you just click OK repeatedly until they'll all imported. If there is a duplicate, you'll see a different message about that. 9) Once they are all imported into the Windows Contacts folder, click Export and save them all as a CSV file. Be sure to enable the First Name, Last Name, Notes, and any other fields you want. 10) Now that you have all your iCloud contacts in CSV format, you can import them into Outlook. Open Outlook, click "File" > "Open & Export" and import that CSV file into your Contacts folder. Check the field mappings to ensure everything is mapped correctly. In my case, First Name was not mapped automatically so I had to select it myself. 11) After the import completes, manually check every contact in both source and destination. Ensure they are all correctly imported into the destination. Manually fix any problems. 12) If you are positive that everything is perfect, you can delete the iCloud contacts. On the iCloud.com Contacts page, do "Select All" again and then choose "Delete" to erase them from iCloud. No need for them to be stored there since they are also backed up as Vcard, CSV, and stored in Office 365. 13) On all your Apple devices, disable iCloud Contacts to make sure future contacts do not get saved in iCloud.
Disclaimer: Everything on this website is written for my own use. I disclaim any guarantees that the procedures and advice listed here are accurate, safe, or beneficial for anyone else. If you attempt to follow any procedures or advice shared here, you do it at your own risk. Part of IT work is knowing how to recover from problems.