How To Deactivate Message Alerts

Automated message alerts in e-mail software and cell phones interrupt your concentration than you think.  Fortunately you have the ability to disable them.

Earlier this week I promised to show you how to disable the message alert lights and alarms for several popular software tools and smart phones.  This by no means an exhaustive list but it’s a start.

If you have any tricks of your own,  please post a comment or send me an e-mail at bob(at)  I’ll keep adding to this post as I learn more.

Microsoft Outlook (2003 and 2007)E-mail_Alerts

To disable the visual and audible alarm each time an e-mail hits your inbox do this:

  1. On the menu bar choose Tools, then Options.
  2. In the Options dialog box click the E-mail Options button.
  3. In the E-mail Options dialog box click the Advanced E-mail Options button (they bruied this one pretty deep).
  4. In the middle of the the Advanced E-mail Options dialog box uncheck the boxes next to Play a Sound and Display a New Mail Desktop Alert.
  5. Choose OK, then OK and OK one more time.

Lotus Notes (R6/6.5)

  1. In your Mail database, select File then Preferences and finally User Preference
  2. Click the Mail icon and choose General.
  3. Under when “New Mail Arrives”, uncheck  the option Play a sound, Show a popup and Show an icon in system tray.
  4. Choose OK


This one’s a little trickier because there are so many different models. I’ll share the ones I know and if you have information about others please share it.

Depending upon your model you have two options.  If you have the Clock application,  open it then press the menu key and roll down to Enter Bedside Mode.

A more elegant (and complicated) solution is to create a new profile or modify an existing one. To keep this simple here’s how to modify your Normal theme:


  1. In the Home Screen choose the Sounds icon. BlackBerry_Sound_Icon It will show your current theme in parenthesis “( )”. In most cases it will be the Normal theme. If you’re not in the Normal theme select from the menu. After Normal is selected roll down to Set Ring Tones and Alerts and select it.
  2. In the Phone menu select Messages to reveal  a list of all e-mail addresses active on the phone.  Select an e-mail address then roll down to LED and change the option to Off. Do this for each e-mail address on the phone.
  3. Press the escape key twice to return to the Home Screen


  1. In the Home Screen select the Profiles icon.BlackBerry_Sound_Icon
  2. Roll down to  Advanced at the bottom and select it.
  3. Roll down to the Normal theme and press the menu key and select Edit.
  4. The next screen displays a list of each e-mail address active on the phone. Roll down to the  first e-mail address and select it.
  5. Roll down to Repeat Notification and change the option to None. Press the Escape key.
  6. Do this ofor each e-mail address on the phone (if applicable).
  7. When finished press the Escape key twice to return to the Home Screen.

Please share any similar tips for other devices.


  1. Very helpful. I have a Windows 2007 and it worked

    Thanks a million


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