In SharePoint Server 2010, I have a standard calendar list created with an attached custom content type. I'm simply trying to create a calculated column on the event's start date in the content type but no calculation is working. I've stripped all logic from it and am simply calling:

=[Start Date]

but the calculated column doesn't want to show up in my list.

I tested another calculated column with a simple:


and it works fine. It's just the start date column that is actin a fool.

Bug? or am I just going crazy?


I tried to apply a workaround of using a reusable SPD workflow that would grab the start date column, extract just the month and year into seperate variables, then populate two custom columns back in the list. This also fails. The error here is that the data type doesn't match. Oddly enough, the same workflow actions works correctly in a list workflow, but not a reusable workflow. If I could package a list workflow, I could use that approach, but I think list workflows are only configurable and not capable of packaging.

update 2

I just want to point out to anybody it may help that the naming structure of this column sucks.

  • The display name of the start time column is "Start Time"
  • The internal name of this column is "StartDate"
  • To performa a calculated column based on this column you use "Start Date" (notice the space)
  • In my environment I also had a "StartTime" column which apparently does nothing but give you grief
  • Finally, to add more problems, the "Start" column and "StartDateTextVersion" columns are useless in this situation as well.

dumb naming conventions...

So in summary, Microsoft needs to fix this minor bug and also adjust the naming conventions of this wacky column.

  • 1
    That should work. What is displayed in the calculated column when viewing the item? Jul 26, 2012 at 3:58
  • The column just doesn't show up at all. Once placed in a content type, when you navigate back to the list, it doesn't exist anywhere. But if you do a calculated column (=[Title] for instance) then it comes through just fine. It's only calc cols containing start date/time.
    – Josey
    Jul 26, 2012 at 13:26
  • Check the List Settings to ensure the column is listed. If not, you may need to associate it from your content type to the list. Jul 26, 2012 at 15:50
  • Indeed it's not listed. The content type is already associated with the list. I even deleted the original event content type and set the custom event as the default. Still nothing.
    – Josey
    Jul 26, 2012 at 15:59
  • The problem also appears isolated to this single list type too. Calc cols on other date fields in different OOB content types work fine. Just the custom content type based on the events content type fails.
    – Josey
    Jul 26, 2012 at 16:01

2 Answers 2


It should work...I just don't think it propagates the custom calculated field to the list when attaching your custom content type.

Steps Taken:

  1. Created a custom content type based on the Event content type.
  2. Added a calculated field = [Start Time].
  3. Added custom content type to Calendar List.
  4. Caveat...Had to manually add the site column to the list.
  5. Added an event.
  • Ok so the column didn't auto-populate from the content type. Instead you had to manually add the site column to the list even after the custom content type was present. I didn't consider that but it does work. Now we'll just need feature activation code that fixes this (dare I say it) bug automagically so that the client doesn't have to touch the list in prod.
    – Josey
    Jul 27, 2012 at 15:22

I was also facing this issue. Then I dig into to this problem and found the another best way of dealing with this issue.

You can refer "EventDate" instead of "Start Date" or creating new custom calculated field. I have used [StartDateOWSDATE] in display template but its not showing.

When I refer {EventDateOWSDATE} its starts displaying me results. Hope this helps.

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