I didn't get Slack notifications on my Mac for over a year because of one hidden setting

M2 Mac mini on a wooden desk
(Image credit: Gerald Lynch / Future)

For over a year, I've been incredibly frustrated with a lack of Slack notifications often berating the application to my colleagues as I missed important work information.

At first, I tried to find the solution, scratching my head and checking forum posts to see if anyone else had the same issue but despite changing all notification settings in the app nothing seemed to work. So I gave up, moved on with my life, and accepted I needed to have one eye on Slack at all times to ensure I didn't miss important work communications.

Fast forward a year and with the upcoming launch of macOS Sequoia making me want to give my M2 Mac Mini a spring clean, I decided enough was enough. I needed to get to the bottom of why Slack notifications never work on my Mac and unfortunately, the solution has been hiding in plain sight all this time.

I had accepted macOS notification suck

This morning while chatting with my colleagues I had an epiphany, not only do I miss Slack notifications but my Mac never notifies me at all. For over a year, I had presumed I was using my Mac with notifications either turned off or in Do Not Disturb, and as I like minimal distractions when working I was absolutely fine with that. It was only when I realized that I had never edited any settings that my brain started to piece two and two together to get to the bottom of my incompetence.

At iMore we review a lot of monitors, some of the best monitors for Mac to be exact, and when using multiple displays via a dock most require an application called DisplayLink. From a macOS perspective, DisplayLink is sharing your Mac display, in order to preserve your privacy, notifications are turned off by default. This ensures that if you use your Mac to screen share on a video call notifications won't pop up for all your colleagues to see. This also means, using DisplayLink 24/7 automatically prevents notifications from appearing on your Mac.

As soon as I realized, I went straight to Settings to change things up and get my Slack notifications back. Here's how:

  1. Open Settings
  2. Choose Notifications
  3. Toggle on "Allow notifications when mirroring or sharing the display"

As soon as I enabled this setting notifications started popping up left, right, and center — I was no longer living an unintentionally distraction-free computer experience. For many who use DisplayLink to enable multiple display support through a dock, this could be a revelation or I may just be absolutely scatterbrained and everyone knows this setting needs to be enabled. 

Either way, I now have Slack notifications again but considering how annoying the constant pop-ups are I might end up turning them off, again unless I put the effort in to streamline my work notification workflow — considering this has taken me a year to work out due to pure laziness and acceptance, I doubt I'll be bothered.

M3 MacBook Air | $1,099$899 at Amazon

M3 MacBook Air | $1,099 $899 at Amazon

We’ve seen this price before on the MacBook Air M3, but it remains the lowest price its ever been. This makes it only $70 more than the also currently reduced M2 MacBook Air — and as a result, a very worthy spend to get the more potent machine.

John-Anthony Disotto
How To Editor

John-Anthony Disotto is the How To Editor of iMore, ensuring you can get the most from your Apple products and helping fix things when your technology isn’t behaving itself. Living in Scotland, where he worked for Apple as a technician focused on iOS and iPhone repairs at the Genius Bar, John-Anthony has used the Apple ecosystem for over a decade and prides himself in his ability to complete his Apple Watch activity rings. John-Anthony has previously worked in editorial for collectable TCG websites and graduated from The University of Strathclyde where he won the Scottish Student Journalism Award for Website of the Year as Editor-in-Chief of his university paper. He is also an avid film geek, having previously written film reviews and received the Edinburgh International Film Festival Student Critics award in 2019.  John-Anthony also loves to tinker with other non-Apple technology and enjoys playing around with game emulation and Linux on his Steam Deck.

In his spare time, John-Anthony can be found watching any sport under the sun from football to darts, taking the term “Lego house” far too literally as he runs out of space to display any more plastic bricks, or chilling on the couch with his French Bulldog, Kermit.