Dato

Calendar events and world clocks in your menu bar

Dato gives you a local clock, date, and multiple world clocks in the menu bar. When you click Dato in the menu bar, you get a menu with a calendar, calendar events, and world clocks. All of this is highly customizable.

Dato supports all the locales and languages that macOS supports for the menu bar text, dates, times, and calendar, but the menus and settings are English-only.

MacStories review of Dato.

If all you need is another clock in the menu bar, check out Second Clock.

Features

  • Calendar, optionally with week numbers and event indicators.
  • Your upcoming events for the next week (customizable) at a glance.
  • Reminders support.
  • Time zones in the Dato menu, optionally with custom names.
  • Show the upcoming event in the menu bar (like Fantastical, Meeter, and MeetingBar)
  • Time travel for time zones.
  • Create events (even with a global keyboard shortcut)
  • Join the next meeting (Zoom/Meet/Teams) with a customizable global keyboard shortcut
  • Clocks for multiple time zones in the menu bar.
  • Custom format for the date & time in the menu bar.
  • Highlight certain days of the week in the calendar.
  • Search time zones by city (15k cities included offline).
  • Supports all calendar services that the built-in Calendar app supports (iCloud, Google, Outlook, etc).
  • Fully customizable.
  • Lots of in-app keyboard shortcuts for power users.
  • Global keyboard shortcut to open/close the app.
  • Supports calendar events with HTML formatted notes.
  • Show seconds in the menu bar clock or in the menu. (Optional)
  • Zoom, Google Meet, and Microsoft Teams integration. (Shows icon on events and button to quickly join)
  • Open calendar events from Google Calendar directly in Google Calendar on the web.
  • Comes with multiple menu bar icons to choose from: date in calendar, date with border (like Itsycal), static clock, none.
  • Large text mode.
  • Date calculator.
  • Hourly chime.

Trial

There’s a fully functional trial available here. The only limitation is that it will prompt you to buy Dato every 12 hours and it will not receive automatic updates. If you decide to buy Dato on the App Store, all data and settings from the trial version will be preserved (they share the same storage).

You can also try it on Setapp for 7 days for free.


Tips

Double-click an event in the event list to open it in the default calendar app, if possible.
Click the month & year label in the calendar (for example, “April 2020”) to change the selected day to “today”.
Long-press a day in the calendar to open that day in the default calendar app. (Supports: Calendar, Fantastical 2, BusyCal, Outlook)
Hold option while clicking the calendar arrows to jump a year instead of a month.
Hold option while dragging the time travel slider to skip by 15 minutes instead of an hour.
If you open the “new event” window while the time travel slider is active, the event will default to the time of the slider.

Keyboard Shortcuts

General

/ Previous/next day in the calendar
/ Same day in the previous/next week in the calendar
option
option
Previous/next month in the calendar
shift option
shift option
Previous/next year in the calendar
space Select today in the calendar
n Create a new event
p Toggle window pinning
c Show the date & time calculator
j Join the current/upcoming Zoom/Meet/Teams meeting (works in the Dato menu and the “upcoming event in menu bar” menu)
o Open the default calendar app
command q Quit the app

Fullscreen notifications

esc Dismiss notification
return Run the default action (highlighted button)

Time travel

command
command
Activate time travel and offset it by one step backwards or forwards
esc / space Deactivate time travel

Gestures

Double-click an event in the event list Open the event in the default calendar app, if possible
Swipe left/right on the calendar Next/previous month in the calendar
option + Swipe left/right on the calendar Next/previous year in the calendar
shift + Swipe left/right on the calendar Next/previous year in the calendar

Frequently Asked Questions

I have a feature request, bug report, or some feedback

Send it here.

The app does not show up in the menu bar

macOS hides menu bar apps when there is no space left in the menu bar. This is a common problem on MacBooks with a notch. Try quitting some other menu bar apps to free up space. If this does not solve it, try quitting Bartender if you have it installed.

Can I buy Dato from outside the App Store and Setapp?

No. Dato is only available from the App Store and Setapp.

The “upcoming event in menu bar” notification is not showing up

Make sure you have enabled the feature in the settings and enabled the correct calendars for it (it has a separate calendar picker). Also make sure that there is enough space in the menu bar to show it. If you have Bartender (or a similar app that hides menu bar items) installed, make sure the menu bar item was not auto-hidden by Bartender. Note that it uses a separate menu item from the main Dato menu item.

It does not support the video call service I use

I’m happy to add support for more services. Just send me an invitation link (replace a few characters at the end to anonymize it).

The app can also detect the link of any video call service if you correctly add it in the Calendar app:

  • Create a new event.
  • Paste the video call link into the location field.
  • Accept the dropdown suggestion about it being a video call.

If you don’t use the Calendar app, you can add the following to the notes field of an event:

----( Video Call )----
https://some-video-call-service.com/join/23423
---===---

How can I open meeting links (Google Meet, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, etc.) in a specific browser or browser profile?

Check out my free Velja app. I made it exactly for this purpose. It has built-in support for this without any setup. It can also open links to Zoom and Microsoft Teams directly in their desktop app.

You can even make it open a specific browser or profile only for links clicked in Dato. Create a custom rule in Velja and set the source app as Dato.

How can I add multiple time zones to the menu bar?

In the Dato settings, go to the “Time Zones” pane, add a time zone, and in the edit window, check “Show in menu bar”. Do the same with the other time zones you want to show in the menu bar. If you already have the time zones added, right-click a time zone, click “Edit”, and then check “Show in menu bar”.

Why does the app use a lot of CPU when not in use?

You most likely have enabled showing seconds in the menu bar. Unfortunately, updating the menu bar is quite expensive. This is a problem with macOS and out of my control.

If you don’t have seconds enabled, please let me know about the excessive CPU usage.

Why does the menu bar hide when I click the Dato menu bar item?

This is a macOS 14 bug and unfortunately not something I can work around.

If you work at Apple → FB13544993

How can I edit an event in Dato?

Dato does not support editing events. Simply double-click the event in the event list to edit it in the Calendar app.

How can I toggle AM/PM for the time?

Dato adheres to what you have set in “System Settings › General › Language and Region”.

How can I change the first day of the week?

Dato adheres to what you have set in “System Settings › General › Language and Region”.

Can you support natural language input like Fantastical?

I’m hoping to have this done later this year. It’s quite a complicated feature.

Can you integrate with Cron?

The integration is already done, but Cron has multiple bugs that make it not work properly. We will have to wait for Cron to fix these bugs.

Can you localize the app into my language?

All the date and time output and the calendar adhere to your locale settings. I have no plans to localize the app itself.

I added a calendar to the Calendar app but it doesn’t show up in the app

You need to enable the calendar in the Dato settings.

Can you add support for Google Calendar / Outlook 365 / Exchange?

It’s already supported. Just add your calendars to the built-in Calendar app and then enable those calendars in the app settings.

How can I hide the built-in menu bar clock?

It’s unfortunately not possible to disable the built-in menu bar clock.

However, you have some options:

  1. (Recommended) In “System Settings › Control Center › Clock Options”, choose the analog clock and disable showing the date. This gets you the closest to how it was on macOS 10.15 as you can use Dato for both date and time.
    This has the added benefit that while the system clock shows as disabled when you enable “Do Not Disturb” (which makes it pretty unreadable), Dato always shows it the same way.
  2. Use Dato for showing the date and the built-in clock for the time.
  3. Only show an icon for Dato.

I would appreciate it if you could take a moment to complain to Apple that they should bring back the ability to disable the built-in menu bar clock. For reference, on macOS 10.15, there’s a checkbox called “Show date and time in the menu bar” in “System Preferences › Date & Time › Clock”. This checkbox no longer exists on macOS 11 and later.

I have already reported it to Apple, but I have yet to get a reply.

Fullscreen notifications do not work

Make sure:

  • The fullscreen notifications setting is enabled.
  • You are on the latest Dato and macOS version.
  • You have selected the correct calendars in the fullscreen notifications settings.
  • You have not muted the event.
  • You have not excluded the event with the “Exclude events” setting.
  • You have not already joined the event in the last 15 minutes.

What does the “Hide” button on an event do?

It makes Dato pretend the event does not exist. The event will not be shown in Dato and it will not cause any notifications from Dato. You an unhide events from the menu (at the top-right).

What does the “Mute” button on an event do?

It makes Dato not notify you about the event. This practically means the event will be ignored for:

  • Fullscreen notifications
  • Upcoming event in the menu bar
  • System notifications for video call events

How can I customize the menu bar date and time format?

If you just want to toggle a certain component, like date or time, see the “Menu Bar” pane in the Dato settings.

If you want something more custom, go to “Date & Time Format” text field. You can specify a datetime pattern.

For example, you could display the full month name, the year, or the day of the year.

How can I show the menu bar date and time in ISO 8601 format?

Either change this system setting or go to the “Menu Bar” pane in the Dato settings, and in the “Date & Time Format” text field, write YYYY-MM-dd HH:mm:ss.

Why does it not show week 53?

You are probably expecting ISO week-numbering while having your system set to Gregorian week numbering. You can change it with this system setting.

Why does it show the last days of December as week 1?

That is called ISO week-numbering.

It shows the incorrect week number

You are probably expecting ISO week-numbering while having your system set to Gregorian week numbering, or the inverse. You can change it with this system setting.

How can I change the week number to ISO 8601 format?

Change this system setting.

How can I open a calendar event in my favorite calendar app (Fantastical, BusyCal, etc.) instead of the built-in Calendar app?

Dato uses the system default calendar app. To change the default calendar app, open the Calendar app’s settings, and in the “Default calendar app” setting, select the app you want. Because of a macOS bug, this does not work. Instead, drag an event from the Calendar app into Finder, right-click on it, select “Get Info”, select your calendar in the “Open with” field, and click “Change All”. Then relaunch Dato.

Dato supports opening calendar events directly in Calendar, Fantastical, BusyCal, Outlook, and Google Calendar (web). For other apps, Dato will just open the app.

How can I send calendar invites when creating an event?

In the new event window, click the “More Settings” button, and send the invites from the Calendar app.

Built-in support for sending calendar invites directly from Dato is not possible, as Apple does not currently provide this capability for third-party apps.

How can I make my calendar refresh more often?

Open the Calendar app’s settings, go to the “Accounts” pane, choose the relevant calendar service in the left sidebar, and then change the “Refresh Calendars” preference. Ideally, it should be set to “Push”, but not all services support that, like Google.

How can I get system notifications for upcoming events?

Dato does not support this as you can just set it up in the built-in Calendar app. Open the Calendar app’s settings, select the “Alerts” pane, and there you can choose when to be notified.

What Dato does support is showing a notification right when an event for a video call starts. The notification includes a button to join the video call directly. You can enable this notification in the Dato settings. You can also enable fullscreen notifications.

How can I enable fullscreen notifications only at certain times or for certain conditions?

This is a perfect use case for the built-in Shortcuts app. You can use the Set Fullscreen Notifications State action provided by Dato to enable or disable fullscreen notifications. For example, to only enable fullscreen notifications during work hours, you will need to create two shortcuts. One to enable fullscreen notifications and one to disable it. You also need the Shortery app to run the shortcuts at the correct times. The Shortery app is only a temporary requirement. It’s almost certain that Apple will introduce automation for Shortcuts in macOS 14.

How can I enable fullscreen notification only when a certain Focus mode is active?

Same as the above but make the Shortery app run the shortcuts when the Focus mode changes.

Can you add support for showing an analog clock like the system clock?

I have no plans to add that, but you can make it work by unchecking the “Time” preference in Dato and keeping the system clock in analog mode.

Can you add support for flashing the time separator like the system clock?

I have no plans to add that, but you can make it work by unchecking the “Time” preference in Dato and keeping the system clock.

A calendar is missing

First, ensure that you have added the calendar to the system. Open the Calendar app’s settings, click the “Accounts” pane, and then check that the calendar is there. Dato can only show calendars added there.

If it exists in the Calendar app, open the Dato settings, click the “Events” tab, and make sure the calendar is enabled.

If it exists in the Calendar app but not in Dato, macOS might have corrupted some permissions. This is, unfortunately, a common problem. Try to reset the permissions for Dato. Quit Dato, open the Terminal app, paste in the following command, and press Enter:

tccutil reset All com.sindresorhus.Dato

Then launch Dato again.

How can I show smart lists from the Reminders app in Dato?

Dato can only show normal lists. macOS does not let third-party apps access smart lists.

How can I make the text in Dato be more easily readable?

Try turning off the “Vibrancy” setting. You can also try increasing the text size with the “Larger text” setting.

What does the symbol in the “upcoming event in menu bar” item mean?

It indicates that there are multiple ongoing events, but only one is shown.

My Google Calendar does not update in the app

You might have to re-authenticate your Google account. Open the Calendar app’s settings, go to the “Accounts” pane, and try to remove and re-add the Google account.

Can I show UTC time in the menu bar?

Yes

  1. Open the Dato settings
  2. Go to the “Time Zones” pane
  3. Click the plus button
  4. Write “utc”
  5. Select the “UTC” item
  6. Click “Add”
  7. Enable “Show in menu bar”
  8. Click “Save”

How can I hide the Dato clock when doing a specific task or at a certain time of the day?

This is a perfect use case for the built-in Shortcuts app. You can use the Quit App and Open App actions to quit and relaunch Dato whenever needed. For example, you could create a focus shortcut that quits Dato, plays some music, turns off notifications, etc.

To hide the Dato clock at a certain time of the day, you need the Shortery app. The Shortery app is only a temporary requirement. It’s almost certain that Apple will introduce automation for Shortcuts in macOS 14.

How can I show day of year in the menu bar?

In the “Custom date & time format” setting, write: D

Learn more

Can I change the background color of Dato?

No, but you can make it white/black by turning off the “Vibrancy” setting.

The widgets provided by Dato do not show up in the widget picker

This is a known macOS bug. Restarting your computer usually fixes it.

The widgets provided by Dato are white or black with no content

Same answer as above.

Can it show the list of events in a separate menu item from the calendar and time zones?

No, but you could use Dato in combination with my Today app.

How can I show todos from Things in Dato?

Dato integrates with the Reminders app only. However, you can use the Shortcuts app to sync todos from Things to the Reminders app, which will make Dato show your todos.

Here is a shortcut that does this. Run it and then enable the “Things” reminders list in the Dato settings.

The Shortcuts app does not yet support automation, so to have the shown todo stay in sync with Things, we need to use the Shortery app to run the shortcut. Choose the “Application” trigger type and make it trigger when Things becomes “Inactive”. Alternatively, place the shortcut in the menu bar and run it manually.

Can Dato support Focus Filters?

This is planned. However, it’s unfortunately not possible until Apple fixes a certain bug with the feature. As a workaround, you could use the Shortery app to run a shortcut on focus changes that uses the “Set Fullscreen Notification State” shortcut action provided by Dato.

Can I change the chime frequency for the “Hourly Chime” feature?

I don’t plan to add more settings to this feature. However, you can achieve this by using the Shortcuts app. Make a shortcut using the “Get Sound” action provided by Dato and have Shortery run it at the interval you prefer. Example shortcut.

How can I transfer my settings from the App Store version to the Setapp version?

Run this command in the Terminal app:

defaults export com.sindresorhus.Dato - | defaults import com.sindresorhus.Dato-setapp -

And to transfer the other way:

defaults export com.sindresorhus.Dato-setapp - | defaults import com.sindresorhus.Dato -

Where can I find the changelog?

Go here and click “Version History”.

How is this different from Fantastical?

Fantastical is a full-blown calendar app, while Dato is a read-only view of your events. Fantastical is a replacement for the built-in Calendar app. You can use both Fantastical and Dato at the same time. Dato even has integration with Fantastical, so you can open events in Dato directly in Fantastical. Fantastical also has a menu bar item, but many people prefer the UI of Dato. Dato also shows time zones and has more customizability for what’s shown in the menu bar. Dato can replace the system date/time, for example.

How is this different from iStat Menus?

iStat Menus lets you show different kinds of info in the menu bar, like system stats, network speed, etc. Dato is focused on date and time only. Dato also looks better.

How is it different from Itsycal?

Dato is not just a calendar app, but also includes menu bar clock replacement, time zones, upcoming event in menu bar, and more. Try both (see the Dato trial) and see for yourself.

Why the name “Dato”?

It means “date” in Norwegian. I just wanted a short, unique, and relevant name.

More FAQs…


Dato 5

Behavior changes
  • You must now click an event in the list to show event details. Previously you hovered over it.
  • Right-click an event in the list for more actions.
  • Double-click an event in the list to open it in the default calendar app.
Why are there so many changes?

The latest version of Dato has been rewritten, moving away from its original system menu format — a change partly prompted by macOS 14 breaking various things. This shift has allowed me to implement significant improvements I have envisioned for years. It’s a change for the better, and I encourage you to give it a few weeks to adapt. If you’re still unsatisfied after that time, please reach out. I am continuously working to refine and enhance the app, which has grown substantially since its simple beginnings, making the old menu system increasingly impractical for its current complexity.

If you are not ready to move to Dato 5, here is Dato 4, which you can use in the meantime.

Some functionality is missing

All existing functionality should be preserved, but some functionality moved into context menus. Simply right-click an event in the event list for more actions. Or right-click an attendee in the event details for more actions.

Why does clicking the “upcoming event in menu bar” item now open the main Dato window?

I had a large number of requests that wanted more context for the event (for example, the events coming after it). When you click the “upcoming event in the menu bar” menu item now, it opens the main Dato window, but highlights the clicked event and shows the event details. This lets you easily see what comes after it.

This also enabled the new setting that lets you hide the main Dato menu bar item, since you can now click the “upcoming event in menu bar” item instead.

How can I now hide an event from showing up in the menu bar?

Previously, when you clicked the event in the menu bar, you could hide it from the menu bar by clicking “Hide from Menu Bar”. You now need to right-click the menu bar item and click “Mute”.


Older Versions

These are free for everyone but they will not run on newer macOS versions.