Turn off those noisy notifications for times when you just want peace and quiet.

Do Not Disturb keeps your Mac from pinging you with banners or alerts that pop up on your screen and keeps notification sounds from playing, so your Mac will be quiet too. You can even set Do Not Disturb for specific times of day and for other criteria as well. Here's how!

How to activate Do Not Disturb on your Mac

  1. Click on the Notification Center icon in the upper right hand corner of your Mac's menu bar.
  2. Scroll up.
  3. Set Do Not Disturb to On.

Click on Notification Center, scroll down to show the Do Not Disturb, then click the switch to turn it on.

You can also turn Do Not Disturb on and off by using the keyboard shortcut: Option + clicking the Notification Center icon.

How to customize Do Not Disturb settings on your Mac

You can also customize when and how Do Not Disturb will be activated by going into the Notifications settings. You can quickly go straight to said settings right from the Notification Center.

  1. Click the Notification Center icon in the top-right corner of the screen.
  2. Click the Settings icon in the bottom-right corner of the screen.

Click the Notification Center icon in the top-right corner, then click the Settings icon in the bottom-right corner.

This opens the Do Not Disturb settings in the Notifications preferences window.

Do Not Disturb settings in Notifcation Center preferences.

You can set Do Not Disturb to turn on during a specific time of day — for example, if you want your Mac to pipe down when you're asleep. If you give presentations using your Mac connected to a projector or external display, or frequently stream content from your Mac to an Apple TV, there's a setting to turn on Do Not Disturb automatically when that happens — which may save you some embarrassment and your viewers some distraction the next time you present.

You can also customize call notifications to come through even when Do Not Disturb mode is active, whether you want to be notified of all calls, or if someone is desperately trying to get ahold of you and have called you twice within three minutes.

How to schedule Do Not Disturb on your Mac

One of the Do Not Disturb settings you can tweak is the ability to schedule times when you want notifications turned off.

  1. Click the Notification Center icon in the top-right corner of the screen.
  2. Click the Settings icon in the bottom-right corner of the screen.

    Click the Notification Center icon in the top-right corner, then click the Settings icon in the bottom-right corner.

  3. Click the checkbox next to From: 10:00 PM to: 7:00 AM in the Notifications settings window. It's the first option under "Turn on Do Not Disturb". The times should be the default options.
  4. Click the arrows next to the From: and To: times to change the time when you don't want to be disturbed by notifications. Alternatively, you can click on the time and type it in yourself.

    Click the checkbox next to From: 10:00 PM to: 7:00 AM in the Notifications settings window.

Once you've scheduled Do Not Disturb, you won't be bothered by notifications during those times you've set.

How to automatically turn on Do Not Disturb on your Mac when mirroring your screen

Whether you're doing an important presentation for your boss or classmates or simply streaming a movie from your Mac to your TV, there are times when you don't want notifications popping up when your screen is mirrored. Fortunately, you can have Do Not Disturb automatically turn on anytime your Mac is being mirrored to a TV or projector.

  1. Click the Notification Center icon in the top-right corner of the screen.
  2. Click the Settings icon in the bottom-right corner of the screen.

    Click the Notification Center icon in the top-right corner, then click the Settings icon in the bottom-right corner.

  3. Click the checkbox next to When mirroring to TVs and projectors. It's the third option under the Turn on Do Not Disturb: section.

    Click the checkbox next to When mirroring to TVs and projectors.

Now your notifications won't be broadcast for your class or coworkers to see during your presentation, and you won't be taken out of your movie by social media notifications. Also worth noting the checkbox right above the mirroring option, which lets you turn off notifications when your Mac's display is sleeping.

How to allow call notifications when Do Not Disturb mode is turned on

Do Not Disturb mode is great for preventing notifications from distracting you, but some notifications, such as incoming calls, are more important than others. If you still want to know when someone is trying to get ahold of you, you can set Do Not Disturb mode to allow call notifications.

  1. Click the Notification Center icon in the top-right corner of the screen.
  2. Click the Settings icon in the bottom-right corner of the screen.

    Click the Notification Center icon in the top-right corner, then click the Settings icon in the bottom-right corner.

  3. Click the checkbox next to Allow calls from everyone if you want to allow all call notifications.
  4. Click the checkbox next to Allow repeated calls if you only want to be bothered if someone is desperate to get ahold of you. You'll only see a Mac notification if the same person calls you twice within three minutes.

Click the checkbox next to Allow calls from everyone if you want to allow all call notifications. Click the checkbox next to Allow repeated calls if you only want to be bothered if someone is desperate to get ahold of you. You'll only see a Mac notification if the same person calls you twice within three minutes.

Do you uses Do Not Disturb?

Do Not Disturb is a handy feature to use for those times when you want to get work done without any distraction at all, and Apple makes it really easy for you to activate. I hope this helps you tame your Mac's notifications for those times only when it's really important, so you feel a little less harried. If you have any questions, spring 'em on me in the comments!