Get started with Google Chat

4. Manage chats

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Chat

You can hide chats that you no longer want to see, and you can delete your chat history. You can also set up notifications to receive alerts when new chats appear.
 

4.1 Hide or delete direct message conversations

Hide a direct message conversation

  1. Go to Google Chat or your Gmail Account.
  2. On the left, next to the person's name or group, click More ""and thenHide conversation "".
Note: If you hide a chat and then chat with that person or group again, your chat history reappears (if it's turned on).

Select more to get the hide message option

Delete a direct message conversation

You can delete all your history of a conversation you had with someone. You can't delete your history for group conversations with 2 or more people.

  1. Go to Google Chat or your Gmail Account.
  2. On the left, next to the person's name, click More ""and thenDelete conversation.
  3. Click Delete to confirm.

To delete only a single message you sent, see edit or delete a message.

4.2 Turn Chat notifications on or off

You can get notified when someone sends you a message in Google Chat. If you create, respond to, or are @mentioned in a message or room, you will get a badge and a notification, if you turn notifications on.

You can also customize notifications by device, conversation or room, or threads, if available. You can customize whether to get an email reminder if you haven't read a message in 12 hours.

Customize notifications in Chat

  1. Open chat.google.com or the Chat standalone desktop app.
  2. In the top right, click Settings Settings and then Settings.
  3. To turn on notifications for Chat messages, under "Desktop notifications," check the box next to "Allow chat notifications."
  4. Optional: To play a sound for incoming chat notifications, check the box next to Play notification sounds.
  5. Optional: To turn email notifications for unread messages on or off, under Email notifications, select Only @mentions & direct messages or Off.

Customize notifications in Gmail

  1. Open Gmail.
  2. At the top right, click Settings Settings and then See all settings.
  3. At the top, click Chat and Meet and then Manage chat settings.
  4. Under "Desktop notifications", check the Allow chat notifications box to turn on notifications for chat messages. 
  5. Optional: The first time you turn on notifications, you'll need to give Google permission to send you notifications.
  6. Optional: To hear a sound for incoming chat notifications, check the Play notification sounds box.
  7. Optional: To get chat notifications in a pop-up window in Gmail, check the Open chat pop-ups for new messages box.
  8. Optional: To turn email notifications for unread messages on or off, under Email, select Only @mentions & direct messages or Off. Email reminders apply to messages that you haven't read after 12 hours. They are not sent for @all mentions.

Tip: Even if you turn off notifications, you'll still get a red notification dot for @mentions and direct messages. 

Customize notifications in a specific room or conversation

  1. Go to Google Chat or your Gmail account.
  2. Select the conversation participants or room name.
  3. At the top, next to the conversation participants or room name, click the Down arrow Down arrow or More options Moreand then Notifications.
  4. Choose an option:
    • Notify always: Get push notifications and a notification dot for all new messages.
    • Notify less: Get push notifications and a notification dot when you’re @mentioned; a thread you follow gets a new message; or if someone in the conversation uses “@all.” 
      • For Rooms with threads: To receive a notification when someone starts a new thread, check the box next to “Also notify for the first message of new threads.” 
    • Notifications off: You won’t get any push notifications, but @mentions & @all will continue to get a notification dot.

Tip: Even if you turn off notifications, you'll still get a red notification dot for @mentions and direct messages. 

Customize notifications for a specific thread in a room

When you follow a thread, the number of new messages appears next to the message or room. You automatically follow threads you start, reply to, or are @mentioned in.

Important: This option is only available if you have selected the "Notify less" notification setting.

  1. Go to Google Chat or your Gmail account.
  2. Open a conversation or room.
  3.  Point to the thread.
  4. At the top right, click Follow.

Tips: 

  • To unfollow a thread and stop notifications, next to the thread, click Following.
  • Even if you turn off notifications, you still get a red notification dot for @mentions and direct messages.

Understand how badges appear in direct messages

Red dot icon Status text Status meaning
Yes Bold There are unread individual direct messages or group direct messages.
No Normal These conversations have no updates or new messages.

Understand how badges appear for Rooms

Red dot icon Status text Status meaning
Yes Bold There are unread messages which directly mention you, or you turned on notifications for the Room or thread. 
No Bold There are unread messages which don't directly mention you, and you turned off notifications.
No Normal These conversations have no updates or new messages.

4.4 Manage chat history

In Chat, if your organization allows it, you can use the history setting to change whether chats are saved. If history is turned off, messages are deleted after 24 hours.

When anyone in the chat turns history on or off, all chat members see:

  • A note in the message stream that history was turned on or off
  • A History on or History off prompt in the compose box

Note: History is always on in threaded rooms. If you turn history off in an unthreaded room, shared files won't appear under Files. If you want people to view shared files, turn on room history and then share files.

Messages you forward to your Gmail inbox remain in your email, even if chat history is turned off.

Turn history on or off in Chat

  1. Go to Google Chat or your Gmail account.
  2. Select a conversation.
  3. At the top, next to the contact or conversation name, click the Down arrow "" or More options "".
  4. Select Turn on history or Turn off history.

Turn chat history on or off in Gmail

  1. Go to Gmail.
  2. Select a conversation.
  3. Click More options "" and then Turn on history or Turn off history

Turn conversation history on or off

4.5 Block and report someone

If you don't want to chat with someone in Chat, you can block them. You can block direct messages, but you can't block people in group messages or in rooms.

When you block someone:

  • If the person you blocked is in your organization, they can still see when you're online.
  • The person you blocked can see that they can't send you messages.
  • Neither you or the person you blocked can edit your messages to one another.
  • The person you blocked is also blocked in certain other Google services.
  1. Go to Google Chat or your Gmail Account.
  2. At the bottom, under Chat, point to someone’s name and click More""and thenBlock & Report "".

    If the person is in your organization, this option is Block.

  3. (Optional) To report the person for abuse, check the Also report box. You can only do this for people outside of your organization.
  4. Click Block to confirm.

Links or attachments the person sent before you blocked them are still active. To send the person a message, you need to unblock them.

When you report someone for abuse, a copy of the last 10 messages of your conversation is sent to Google for review.

Unblock someone

  1. Go to Google Chat or your Gmail Account.
  2. Choose an option:
    • In Chat, at the top, click Settings ""and thenSettingsand thenManage accounts you have blocked
    • In Gmail, at the top, click Settings ""and thenSee all settingsand thenChat and Meetand thenManage chat settingsand thenManage accounts you have blocked.
  3. Select the person from the suggestions.
  4. Click Unblock "".

Tip: You can also unblock someone in Chat by going to Settingsand thenBlockedand thenManage accounts you have blocked. Click RemoveClosenext to the person that you blocked.

 
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