Tutorial: How To Disable Or Turn Off iMessage On Mac

While Apple's software is easy to use, it can be confusing to try to turn off iMessage on Mac. Fortunately, we have gotten to the bottom of this common problem and written out detailed step-by-step instructions for you to follow to accomplish this task. 

Apple's creation of iMessage is one of the best things the company has done since it integrated so well with their iPhone and iPad. However, it can also be one of the most annoying features due to general distractions or if you want to keep messages from being accidentally seen by friends, co-workers or family members who are using your connected Apple devices. 

However, there is good news! Keeping this from happening isn't a hard process and we can fix this dilemma in a just few easy steps of which I will outline below. This process will work on any Apple computer including an iMac, MacBook or MacBook Pro as long as it is running one of the more recent versions of MacOS that supports iMessage. 


How To Turn Off iMessage On A Mac (Temporarily)

If you just want to disable your notifications temporarily for a 24-hour period then you'll just want to enable "Do Not Disturb" mode which will keep your Mac from displaying any iMessage pop-ups for the remainder of the day. 

  • To accomplish this on modern versions of Apple's MacOS, simply click the notifications icon in the top right of your Mac's display which will open up your Notification Center
  • From here you'll see two options at the top of your menu with toggles for features like 'Night Shift' and 'Do Not Disturb' mode
  • Toggle 'Do Not Disturb' mode on and you'll see the switch activate with a blue 'ON' signal.

Once you get to this point, your notifications will be temporarily halted from popping up on your display. This will only last until the new calendar day so it won't be a permanent block for iMessage notifications.


How To Disable iMessage Notifications On Mac (Permanently)

If you want to completely remove all iMessage notifications from popping up on a permanent basis (don't worry it is reversible) then you can skip the 'Do Not Disturb' route and disable the notifications altogether:

  • Open up your 'System Preferences'
  • Click on 'Notifications'
  • Scroll down to 'Messages'
  • Change message alert style to 'none'
  • Uncheck all the of the boxes under to disable any form of iMessage notifications/sounds

Upon reaching this point, you will no longer receive ANY notifications coming from your iMessage on your Mac in any form (popup, icon or sound). This only need to be done once, but if you wish to reenable them later you can follow the same process and reconfigure the settings.


How To Deactivate iMessage Entirely (Permanent)

If you want to completely iMessage activity altogether on your Mac computer then you can simply sign out of your Apple ID in the iMessage app:

  • Open up your iMessage
  • In the top bar, click on 'Messages' then click on 'Preferences'
  • A settings panel will open up and you'll want to click on the 'Accounts' tab (found to the right of 'General')
  • Locate your Apple ID with the words 'iMessage' under it and click on it
  • From here you can change your necessary settings which in this case you will want to either uncheck the 'Enable this account' box or just click 'Sign Out' altogether as either option will disable iMessage

Unlike the previous option, this will completely remove iMessage access for your given Apple ID from this system. While it can be reversed by re-enabling or re-signing into your account, the above process will disable the entire iMessage account for this Mac computer.

Keep in mind, we used the term permanent in the sense that once you do remove access to your Apple ID, it will no longer have access to iMessage for the time being. However, it is not totally permanent in that access can be restored by re-logging into your Apple ID on your computer again. 


At this point, we have finished our step-by-step guide and you should have been able to choose at least one method to deactivate iMessage notifications on your Macintosh computer. 

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Colt Agar

Colt Agar

Managing Editor at TheTechReviewer.com
A graduate of the University of Massachusetts and our Managing Editor, Colt loves testing out the newest tech products/services. His goal is to help better educate other consumers to ensure the most satisfying purchases decisions on consumer electronics and web services. When he is not working on creating new content, Colt enjoys spending time with his two Australian Shepherds, Mia and Zoey.
Colt Agar
Colt Agar
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