problems with notifications from Messages app when using iMessage

Discussion in 'OS X Mountain Lion (10.8)' started by cosimolupo, Aug 25, 2012.

  1. cosimolupo, Aug 25, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2012

    cosimolupo macrumors newbie

    Aug 25, 2012
    Since updating to OSX Mountain Lion, I am experiencing problems with notifications when receiving new messages through the iMessage service.

    To summarize:

    When receiving messages through iMessage on OS X 10.8, the banner notifications, with the concomitant sounds, are only displayed for the first incoming messages that start a new conversation -- of course, while the app is in the background. By "new conversations", I mean those which do not appear already in the left-side panel in the main Messages window.

    But when the user activates the in order to reply to the messages received, and then activates another app, any new message that arrives in an open conversation while Messages is in the background will not play any sound, nor will it show any banners -- unless or until the user deliberately close (CMD-SHIFT-W) the open conversation.

    However, the dock's badge with the unread count gets silently updated -- although this is not enough for those like me who prefer to keep the Dock hidden.

    On the other hand, the banners, with the accompanying sounds, are displayed correctly for all the other IM services (except iMessage), including services such as GTalk (Jabber) or AIM which I was able to test myself. By "correctly", I mean that whenever the is in the background, a notification is shown both in the up-right corner and in the Notification Center, the "new message" sound is played, and the dock-badge count is updated.

    Thus, the issue occurs only when using iMessage, and does not occur with the other IM services, which behave as they should. iMessage's behaviour is utterly inconsistent with the behaviour of the other IM services within the same application.

    In addition, there is another issue with Messages/iMessage notifications, which similarly only occurs with incoming iMessages and not with other chat services.

    When the is closed and a new iMessage is received, then the app opens itself in the background -- so far so good -- but then neither a sound is played nor a banner is displayed: again, only the dock badge is updated. And this occurs whether or not the new imessage belongs to an open conversation or if it starts a new one.

    Sadly, OS X 10.8.1 update did not fix these issues -- nor, as far as I can tell, the 10.8.2 developer beta (build 12C31a).

    As a workaround, I have also tried to use a Growl applescript triggered by the "on message received" event, like I used to do with iChat as well as Messages beta in OS X Lion -- but the problem is exactly the same.

    That is, the script is being triggered only for messages received through the other IM/chat services but it is not for iMessage, unless -- like in the circumstances described above -- the incoming iMessages starts a new conversation, and the user does not interact with; after the app is activated, and the conversation is open, all the new messages received in the background will not trigger the applescript event.

    I believe this a bug, although it's difficult to believe that only few people seem to have realised it. Maybe, it just because the bug is difficult to describe exactly.

    I have also opened a similar thread at the apple community forum:

    As you can read, other users have also confirmed the issue. So it seems it's not a problem with my particular setup, but either a bug or, worst, a design flaw.

    I loved iMessage since the beginning, I was an enthusiast early adopter on both the iPhone and the Mac, and have encouraged many others to join. But after Mountain Lion's release, I feel that the got even worse than the beta.

    I can't rely on a messaging application which does not notify me _consistently_ when I receive a new incoming message!

    has anybody here also experienced this issue?
    Let me know in case you find any workaround.


  2. cosimolupo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 25, 2012
    first lesson learned as a newbie macrumors forum user:
    if you title a new thread as "silly question about [something]" or similarly generic titles, you will get three times more views and five times more replies than if you write a long, dull, detailed post with a very circumscribed question... :rolleyes:
  3. satcomer macrumors 603


    Feb 19, 2008
    The Finger Lakes Region
    I tend to think messages will get a lot better with the release of IOS 6. Plus keep on the Notification System Preference because when I switched mine Messages to 'Alerts' (in the 10.8 mac)is started to work a lot better.
  4. cosimolupo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 25, 2012
    this has nothing to do with iOS. It's a problem with the Messages application in Mountain Lion.
    Also, I don't see why it would help to change the notification settings from banners to alerts. It's the banners which are not working as they should.

    I simply want that banner notifications show up every time I receive a new message and the app is in the background, and I want it to play a new-message sound -- incidentally, as the app already does for all other IM chat services.

    That's all.
  5. Arelunde macrumors 6502a


    Jul 6, 2011
    CA Central Coast
    Once again, I have to say that your recipients need to have their "" addresses added into THEIR Messages/iMessages settings. Otherwise, there will be problems. The phone number isn't primary any more. It's the "" email address.
  6. cosimolupo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 25, 2012
    @Arelunde who are you replying to? Your comment is completely out of context. You clearly didn't understand a word of my post.

    The problem is not about sending or receiving iMessages, it's about getting the notification. The messages are delivered correctly, but no sound is played and no banner notification displayed.

    Please read before posting generic answers.

  7. cosimolupo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 25, 2012
    I kind of found a workaround -- even though now, ironically, I can no longer replicate the bug!

    To fix the problem with iMessage notifications, I simply used "Delete Conversation..." (CMD-DELETE) from the File menu. Apparently, this command does the same thing as "Clear Transcript" (CMD-OPT-K) in the Edit menu -- I don't know why there are two menu items for the same action, but anyway. Now, when a receive a new iMessage from the buddy whose conversation I deleted, the banners and the sounds are working again for that iMessage buddy!

    I don't know, maybe the permissions of the ~/Library/Messages/Archive folder or those of the chat-history files were corrupted, and after deleting them they are being correctly rebuilt.

    It's really strange...
    Only another user on the Apple Community Forum has acknowledged the same issue, so far.

    The mistery deepens.
  8. cosimolupo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 25, 2012
    actually, only one little problem still remains:

    while the Messages app is closed, the very FIRST iMessage receveid in a brand new conversation -- that is, a conversation with a completely new buddy or one that has been deleted -- will NOT display any banner, nor will it register in the Notification Center or play any sound.
    However, the SECOND iMessage received from the same buddy (if any), WILL display a notification, register itself in the NC, and play a notification sound.

    The problem thus affects only the first message that one receives from a new buddy while the app is closed; all the other messages are now correctly notified, whether the app is closed or in the background -- well, unless the mysterious bug come back again.

    I'll keep you posted.
  9. JT3Jon macrumors member

    Dec 20, 2008
    thank you VERY much for posting this!! I was having the same "lack of sound" problem and deleting my old chat fixed it. This even got notifications to work again when someone posts and I'm in a different app!!!

    I have no clue why both stopped working (sound and notifications), but it if wasn't for you sharing your solution I doubt I would have ever found a solution. THANK YOU!!!!
  10. decadentdave macrumors 6502

    Sep 11, 2007
    I am having this problem using iMessage in Yosemite I am no longer receiving sound notifications. Went into my preferences and no matter which sound I select for receiving messages none of them will play. My external audio is up loud and I can play itunes music and get system sounds. This is only happening in iMessage. Really frustrating if I am away from my desk I can't hear a ping that a message was received and the other party is kept waiting for a response.

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