View Full Version : Methods of being notified of new IMs

September 6th, 2010, 07:51 PM
Hey everyone. I wasn't sure where to put this, since it isn't exactly a help topic, but rather, a topic for discussing various methods and tips. So I figured it'd fit in the Community Cafe, but please move it if there's a better spot.

Anyhow, I was wondering, how does everyone deal with being notified when they receive a new IM? Put it another way: Say you're viewing your browser in full-screen while you're conversing with someone over IM, and your IM window is in the background--how do you know when you get IMed?

Some obvious methods I've come across, and my problems with them:
the window in the panel's Window List will blink (but I don't want a panel for a Windows List)
an icon in a dock blinks/jumps/whatever (but I don't really want a dock)
the messaging indicator (the envelope in the indicator applet) will change color (but it also changes color when you get an email, which could be confusing)
an icon in the notification panel will change (but the notification panel is cluttered and I don't want it)
a notify-osd bubble will pop up (but I don't want people reading IMs over my shoulder)
the IM program makes a sound when you get a new message (but that distracts other people)

So those are the ways I've come across. And evidently, I'm not content with any of them. I'm leaning toward a dock, but eh. Any other methods? How do you figure out when you're IMed?

September 6th, 2010, 07:55 PM
I use Empathy and it gives me a notification popup and a sound (which has an option of not making a sound when you receive a new IM).

But right now it's a bit buggy. D:

September 7th, 2010, 06:19 AM
Lately I've been using bitlbee and xchat. That way, when somebody messages me, the xchat icon flashes.

September 7th, 2010, 06:41 AM
I'm a fan of Pidgin, personally. Assuming you have at least one panel with a Notification Area you get a nice little Pidgin icon that blinks when you have a new IM. It's not intrusive, but gets the point across nicely. It works for me.

How crowded is your Notification Area if you don't want another indicator in there?

September 7th, 2010, 10:25 AM
A sound and a popup summary are nice. I like the way Windows Live Messenger does it.

September 7th, 2010, 01:34 PM
GLX-Dock and its Pidgin applet, to be sure you never miss a message.

September 7th, 2010, 02:00 PM
If the problem with a notification bubble is people reading along over your shoulder, I'm sure there must be a way of getting a bubble that only says "new message" or something.

September 8th, 2010, 03:53 AM
How crowded is your Notification Area if you don't want another indicator in there?

I have Wuala, Glippy, Artha, and Pidgin. All colorful icons, and there was just something irksome about them there. So I removed the entire notification area. It's nice and minimalistic now--just simple monochrome and few icons.

Right now I'm using sound, which... seems adequate. But if it turns out to be to distracting, maybe I'll try changing the notification bubble. Thanks for the idea, Metallion!