Messages app now quits when close window?

anthonyzp

macrumors member
Original poster
Oct 20, 2014
45
11
Just updated to Mojave. I am a heavy iMessage user using the Messages app on my MacBook.

I like to 'close' my windows for all my apps running and Mail and Messages would still run (black dot indicator below app icon on dock) in the background and when a new message arrived, I'd click Messages app and the app would pop up right away.

Now in Mojave I have noticed when you close the Messages window, the app actually quits so when you go to read a new message, the app opens up first (app icon bounces on dock a few times before opening) which just takes a few seconds rather than instant.

Anyone else noticing this changed behaviour?
 
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I Need a Drink

macrumors regular
Oct 14, 2013
188
32
Just updated to Mojave. I am a heavy iMessage user using the Messages app on my MacBook.

I like to 'close' my windows for all my apps running and Mail and Messages would still run (black dot indicator below app icon on dock) in the background and when a new message arrived, I'd click Messages app and the app would pop up right away.

Now in Mojave I have noticed when you close the Messages window, the app actually quits so when you go to read a new message, the app opens up first (app icon bounces on dock a few times before opening) which just takes a few seconds rather than instant.

Anyone else noticing this changed behaviour?
Just noticed, this is happening to me as well.
 
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mj_

macrumors 6502a
May 18, 2017
801
466
Austin, TX
Yup, the application definitely quits as soon as I close the messages window.
Maybe they did that because the messages window is the only window left as there is no buddy list anymore now that they've taken away Jabber support from us.
 
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mj_

macrumors 6502a
May 18, 2017
801
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Austin, TX
Interesting observation: it stays open as long as it's the frontmost "running" application.
Aka: open Messages, then close the window but don't click anywhere else. Messages will continue running and the indicator is still present in the dock. As soon as I click somewhere and activate another application Messages quits instantly.
 

maverick808

macrumors 65816
Jun 30, 2004
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135
Scotland
Nah, I have that checked. It doesn't affect this. That just means that when you open an app next time then it will start fresh rather than opening with the last document/window you had open.
 
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theonekcrow

macrumors 6502a
Jul 12, 2009
797
94
Indiana
I have 16GB of RAM and it is happening to me too. I notice that it tends to happen after I closed the window, and then moved back and forth between a fullscreen app or another desktop. One workaround for this until the bug is fixed is to right click on the app in the dock and select "Hide"
 
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slb

macrumors 6502
Apr 15, 2005
397
62
New Mexico
Interesting observation: it stays open as long as it's the frontmost "running" application.
Aka: open Messages, then close the window but don't click anywhere else. Messages will continue running and the indicator is still present in the dock. As soon as I click somewhere and activate another application Messages quits instantly.
This is standard behavior for applications that support automatic termination. Presumably, Apple has now enabled support for automatic termination in Messages since you don't need to keep the window open to be notified of new messages.
 
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I Need a Drink

macrumors regular
Oct 14, 2013
188
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Looking at it some more, I don't think it's actually closing. I think the dot underneath is disappearing, but I think the app is still open in the background as before. I'm still getting notifications when I get a message, even though it appears that the app is closed. In previous releases, if the app was completely closed with no dot underneath, I wouldn't get any notifications for incoming messages, so I think it's a bug in Mojave that the dot is disappearing.
 

anthonyzp

macrumors member
Original poster
Oct 20, 2014
45
11
Appears to be a bug given more users are reporting this behaviour?

I still receive Messages when the app is closed. All of the behaviour reported above is the same for me. Right now I am just 'Hiding' the app to keep it running whilst I work in other apps so when new messages come through, I can click Messages and app is displayed right away (like how it behaved in High Sierra and older). If I don't do this, then yes, after a short while after closing the window, the app quits and then when a new message comes through, I have to wait a few seconds for the app to open. (bouncing app icon on Dock etc)
 
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maverick808

macrumors 65816
Jun 30, 2004
1,130
135
Scotland
This is standard behavior for applications that support automatic termination. Presumably, Apple has now enabled support for automatic termination in Messages since you don't need to keep the window open to be notified of new messages.
I don't think that's it since the behaviour is different for different people. My Messages.app definitely doesn't close when I leave it. I can check in Activity Monitor to see that it stays running and Message's PID is one of the lower ones so it has not been stopped for a while.
 

ledzep1

macrumors regular
Jan 24, 2016
173
39
Don't use the imessages app but everything else I close with red cross, the dot stays under the app, apart from preferences and few others.

One thing I have noticed, is when I close Safari with red cross and then reopen it, it refreshes back to my homepage losing my previous website. Has this always been the case?
 

maverick808

macrumors 65816
Jun 30, 2004
1,130
135
Scotland
One thing I have noticed, is when I close Safari with red cross and then reopen it, it refreshes back to my homepage losing my previous website. Has this always been the case?
For Safari go into the first preferences page (General) and the very first drop-down says "Safari opens with" and you can choose "A new window" or "All windows from last session". You're after that last option.
[doublepost=1537868188][/doublepost]
Likewise stays open... MacBook Pro 2017 15" Actually, it does close if i click anywhere else on Desktop... Hmmmmm!?
It's not closing when you click the desktop is it? When you do that you are just switching to Finder. To know for sure just open Activity Monitor and find Messages in there, then you'll be able to see if it really is opened or closed.
 
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mj_

macrumors 6502a
May 18, 2017
801
466
Austin, TX
Alright, it looks like it doesn't actually close but the dot disappears from underneath the dock icon. As soon as I click the Messages icon the window pops up immediately without a single bounce. However, if I actually go ahead and quit the application properly it bounces once before the messages window appears.

Looks like a bug to me.
 
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slb

macrumors 6502
Apr 15, 2005
397
62
New Mexico
I don't think that's it since the behaviour is different for different people. My Messages.app definitely doesn't close when I leave it. I can check in Activity Monitor to see that it stays running and Message's PID is one of the lower ones so it has not been stopped for a while.
With automatic termination, the system handles process termination. If an app is quit, the process can be silently kept alive so that when the app is re-opened, it relaunches instantly. If system resources are strained, the process can be killed.
[doublepost=1537893273][/doublepost]
Alright, it looks like it doesn't actually close but the dot disappears from underneath the dock icon. As soon as I click the Messages icon the window pops up immediately without a single bounce. However, if I actually go ahead and quit the application properly it bounces once before the messages window appears.

Looks like a bug to me.
That's the standard behavior for apps that support automatic termination.
 
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mj_

macrumors 6502a
May 18, 2017
801
466
Austin, TX
That's the standard behavior for apps that support automatic termination.
Does System Preferences support automatic termination? Because if so it behaves completely different: when I close the window the application quits completely.
 

slb

macrumors 6502
Apr 15, 2005
397
62
New Mexico
Does System Preferences support automatic termination? Because if so it behaves completely different: when I close the window the application quits completely.
Some apps explicitly terminate when their last remaining window is closed via the -applicationShouldTerminateAfterLastWindowClosed: delegate method.
 
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mj_

macrumors 6502a
May 18, 2017
801
466
Austin, TX
Exactly. And Messages is not terminating. Instead, the indicator simply disappears but the application continues to run in the background nevertheless. Thus, it behaves completely irrational and unlike every other application I've encountered.
 

MacsAndBananas

macrumors newbie
Sep 25, 2018
2
2
Edinburgh
Exactly. And Messages is not terminating. Instead, the indicator simply disappears but the application continues to run in the background nevertheless. Thus, it behaves completely irrational and unlike every other application I've encountered.
I've registered just to comment on this thread. It appears the behaviour of Messages has changed from HS > Mojave and I think it is intentional.

In HS Messages.app would work like most other apps - pressing the red cross will close the window but the app will remain open with indicator dot. Message notifications will still appear and the total unread messages would be shown on the app icon. Explicitly quitting Messages.app (e.g. CMD + Q) will quit the app entirely- no new message notifications will show, app icon does not display unread messages. The app would update with new messages upon next launch.

In Mojave, as observed, pressing the red cross will close the window but the indicator dot remains present until Messages.app is no longer the foreground app - i.e. clicking anywhere on the screen will result in the app closing, indicator dot disappearing, BUT the unread messages app icon count remains. In fact, even if you explicitly quit Messages.app the unread messages app icon remains and new message notifications come display.

I don't think this is a bug - it feels like a effort for the macOS Messages app to match the behaviour to the iOS counterpart. E.g., on iOS one can 'quit' the app by swiping up on the app switcher yet message notifications still come through and the app icon is updated. Now it means the Messages app does not need to be 'running' for new messages to come through - I can finally remove Messages from my (start hidden) login items to avoid me missing new messages.

EDIT: For what it's worth, I notice Calendar.app has a similar behaviour once the window is closed - the indicator dot disappears once its no longer in the foreground.
 
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