See New Gmail Messages In Your System Tray With Google Notifier For Gmail

Chris Hoffman 03-09-2012

While Google’s official Gmail Notifier for Windows is a bit old these days, it’s still one of the email programs we list on our Best Windows Software page The Best PC Software for Your Windows Computer Want the best PC software for your Windows computer? Our massive list collects the best and safest programs for all needs. Read More . Many of us live in the browser and can get by with a browser extension for checking Gmail, but Gmail fans that don’t leave a browser open all the time will find a lot to like in the Gmail Notifier. As our Best Of page says, it’s just “simple and handy.”


The main alternatives to Gmail Notifier for Windows are browser extensions like Google Mail Checker for Chrome 6 Cool Google Chrome Extensions for Gmail Users If you're like me, you use Gmail for all of your email needs, even across multiple email accounts. Although there are plenty of email clients available, Gmail is often easier to use, quicker, and nearly... Read More and more full-featured desktop email clients 7 Reasons Why You Should Stop Using Desktop Email Clients Is a web-based email client preferable to a desktop option? We looked at the different pros and cons and found an answer for you. Read More like Mozilla Thunderbird 5 Thunderbird Add-Ons That Will Make it Better Than Gmail For many years, I switched between a whole range of email clients. First I went with Outlook Express. Then I bought a new computer and decided to test the waters with Thunderbird. Once Gmail became... Read More . While a few unofficial Gmail Notifier-like utilities exist, Gmail Notifier does a good job of straddling the boundary between Web and desktop applications.

This program is only available for Windows.


Gmail Notifier is a simple program with only a few options. When installing it, you’ll be asked whether you want to run it at startup and whether you want to use Gmail for your outgoing mail. Both these options are selected by default, and you’ll probably want to leave both of them enabled – the Run on startup option will ensure Gmail Notifier is running all the time and monitoring your account for new emails, while the Use for outgoing mail option causes Gmail to take over mailto: links in every application – any time you click an email link in a Windows program, Gmail Notifier will launch a Gmail compose window.

gmail notifier

When you first start Gmail Notifier, you’ll be prompted to log in with your Google account’s username and password. Select Remember my credentials and you won’t be prompted again. If you’re using Google Authenticator with your Google account, you’ll need to create an application-specific password instead of providing your Google account – see the next section for more information.



There are a few issues you may run into while setting up Gmail Notifier for the first time.

If you’re using Google Authenticator’s two-factor authentication Google Recommends 2-Step Process To Protect Your Account [News] Most savvy Internet users probably have at one at least Google account - mainly because Google, for good or bad, crosses paths with so many other websites that it's hard to avoid not using the... Read More to secure your Google account, you’ll be asked to use an application-specific password instead of your regular password. To do so, go to the Authorized Applications account page on Google’s website and use the Generate Password form near the bottom of the page to create a new application-specific password. Give that password to Gmail Notifier and it will log in properly.

gmail notifications

You’ll probably also see a “Service temporarily unavailable” error message. This is caused by Gmail using HTTPS encryption What Is HTTPS & How To Enable Secure Connections Per Default Security concerns are spreading far and wide and have reached the forefront of most everybody's mind. Terms like antivirus or firewall are no longer strange vocabulary and are not only understood, but also used by... Read More to secure your mail.


gmail notifications

The Google Notifier installer was never updated to support HTTPS, but there is an official patch you can download and run to fix this problem. Click here to download the notifier_https patch from Google. First, close the Gmail Notifier application. Open the download .zip file on your computer, double-click the notifier_https.reg file, and agree to the confirmation prompt.

Restart Gmail Notifier after installing this patch and it will work properly.


The application itself is simple. Gmail Notifier will appear in your system tray Manage And Tidy The Windows 7 System Tray Every Windows user has seen the Windows system tray (also known as the notification area) become cluttered over time. We’ve covered disabling distracting desktop notifications in the past, but what if the icons themselves are... Read More and check for new mail every few minutes. When it finds new mail, the icon will become bolded and you’ll see a preview pop-up for each new email.


gmail notifications

You can double-click the Gmail icon to go directly to your Gmail inbox or right-click it to immediately check for new mail or adjust the notifier’s options.

The Options window is pretty minimalistic – you can toggle Gmail’s handling of mailto: links and select which browser Gmail Notifier uses to open Gmail. By default, it uses your computer’s default browser.

gmail message notification


Click a mailto: email link in any program (assuming you haven’t disabled this option) and a Gmail Compose window will open in your web browser, just as if you were using a desktop email application. No more copying and pasting email addresses to your browser!

Google Chrome users can actually get system-wide support for mailto: links in Gmail without the notifier – just visit Gmail in the latest version of Chrome and you’ll be prompted to enable this if it isn’t already enabled – but this feature can be useful for fans of other browsers, such as Firefox.

gmail notifier

How do you monitor your Gmail account for new emails? Leave a comment and let us know!

Related topics: Email Tips, Gmail, Notification.

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  1. rtrg
    November 12, 2015 at 10:47 am

    Can GOOGLE NOTIFIER handle 4 or more email addresses, 3 in Gmail, and one in my ISP provider and allow me to read them in both THUNDERBIRD client and GMAIL inbox page and send from either? My KOO MAIL client stopped working and TB does not leave a notifier behind during installation, I need to open it from the desktop to check for mail as opposed to only when the notifier tells me to.

  2. Vijaynand Mishra
    September 9, 2012 at 5:19 am

    good app

  3. Victor Ong
    September 5, 2012 at 5:59 pm

    If you go to gmail > settings, there will be an option (for chrome users only) to notify you if a chat/email comes in when the gmail tab is not in focus. It's is pretty handy.

    For firefox I simply right-click and click "pin tab," as any changes to the webpage will be detected and the tab will flash green.

    • jordan
      September 27, 2012 at 6:18 pm

      Yeah, but that's no good if you close your browser. This works if your browser is closed.

  4. Darren Reynolds
    September 5, 2012 at 8:39 am

    I just use a chrome extension that notifies me...

  5. GrrGrrr
    September 4, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    i better keep gmail open in browser, rather install a new software for monitoring. it adds to system resources.

  6. Mihovil Pletikos
    September 4, 2012 at 6:03 pm

    doesn't gtalk do all that?

    • Mihovil Pletikos
      September 4, 2012 at 6:05 pm

      and more?

    • Chris Hoffman
      September 29, 2012 at 7:48 am

      I suppose, but the fact that it does more is a problem if you don't want chatting.

  7. venkatp16
    September 4, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    Good one.. One of the most irritating thing for me is the yahoo mail alert icon system tray.

  8. Pablo
    September 4, 2012 at 3:33 pm

    I check my gmail accounts with my old The Bat 2.12 and works just fine. When the bat move your wings in the tray I know I have mail.

  9. Kao Vang
    September 4, 2012 at 2:50 pm

    I check mine occasionaly but just form the browser.

  10. Vinny Panico
    September 4, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    I've been using this for a while and it works well. I just wish I could delete, label, or archive e-mails right from the notification bar.

  11. Ahmed Khalil
    September 4, 2012 at 4:34 am

    Good and productive, google always do the best. thanks for the artical

  12. jasray
    September 4, 2012 at 3:09 am

    Why would anyone use an antiquated program that needs to be patched as soon as it's installed (rhetorical question). Thanks, but I'll pass.

  13. Joe Johaneman
    September 4, 2012 at 12:27 am

    I actually turn off all mail notifications (in fact, most notifications, including Facebook, Twitter, etc). I find the notifications distracting when I'm trying to accomplish something. Without notifications, I can control when I spend time with email and social media. I do have Pushover installed on my phone and a few IFTTT actions set up so if I get mail that I know is important, I'll be immediately notified. Otherwise, I don't want the distraction.

    • Tug Ricks
      September 4, 2012 at 1:21 am

      I don't feel that my lifestyle requires me to be instantly notified of every email I get. Maybe one day I'll be that important, but at this point I'm fine with just checking it a few times throughout the day.

    • Ahmed Khalil
      September 4, 2012 at 10:37 am

      Yes, some time we feel that we need to stop all this automaited tools and search for what we need by our self.

    • Chris Hoffman
      September 29, 2012 at 7:48 am

      Me too, actually. When waiting for an important email, I might re-enable notifications, but I agree with you.

      If I got notified of each new email as it came in, I'd be doing email 24/7. Of course, some other people will get less email than we do and might want a notifier.