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Why Isn’t My iMessage Working On My Laptop?

Why Isn’t My iMessage Working On My Laptop

Naturally, it’s infuriating to see Apple’s proprietary chat technology (which is meant to perform flawlessly on over 900 million Apple devices worldwide) not working on your Mac. And all of this without any discernible purpose, correct?

True, however iMessage never fails to operate unless there are a few problems in your device’s backend. Yet reviving it is a breeze. And here is all you need to know about it.

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Why Isn’t My iMessage Working On My Laptop?

Though I’m not positive which of these concerns you, some of the most fundamental reasons why iMessage may stop working on your MacBook are as follows:

  • On your Mac, the iMessage service may already be deactivated for whatever reason.
  • Additionally, the accumulation of several caches may result in similar errors.
  • A discrepancy between your laptop’s date and time zones might potentially prevent the service from working correctly.
  • The encryption scheme for iMessage may have met some issues.
  • Alternatively, your iMessage, and preferable your entire device, may just require a complete/fresh restart to resolve several such performance issues.

Therefore, let’s go over all of the troubleshooting techniques for resolving this issue.


Why Isn’t iMessage Working On My Mac? What to Do

Before we get into the remedy for the worst-case situation, I’d urge you to verify that the issue is with iMessage on your Mac and not with another application. To begin, attempt the following fundamentals:

Is iMessage working to operate for a single contact or for all of your contacts?

Ensure that you send a test message over iMessage to each of your contacts (who you are aware utilizes the service). If it works for everyone else except one (particular) of your contacts, the issue may be with that individual and not with your smartphone. However, if iMessage does not function for you, continue to the troubleshooting steps below.


1. Ensure That You Have a Reliable Internet Connection

Unlike regular SMS/MMS communications, which do not require a cellular network on the receiving end, iMessage requires a stable internet connection to function. To begin, ensure that your laptop is linked to a steady and working internet connection.

2. Reboot Your MacBook

At times, a simple system reboot will suffice, eradicating several tiny software glitches that accumulate over time as a result of your laptop and OS being on and operating 24 hours a day.

Therefore, if you’re used to putting the gadget in sleep mode rather than entirely shutting it off after usage, you’re simply not giving it enough breathing room. Given that, such transient hardware/software failures are inevitable, and a new restart of your system should resolve the majority of such difficulties within seconds.

3. Make Minor Adjustments to Your iMessage Configuration and Send/Receive Settings

Not only must you enable the service on your device, you must also setup it up with all your email accounts and phone numbers to avoid sync conflicts and other “iMessage not working on Mac” concerns. What to do is as follows:

  • Open the Messages app from the navigation bar.
  • Preferences, followed by the iMessage tab.
  • Select your account and verify that it has all of your email accounts and phone numbers.
  • If not, enter and register the account/phone number with which you wish to use iMessage here using your Apple ID.
  • If yes (i.e., all your data is already enabled and associated with your Apple ID), you can fine-tune some by deactivating and reenabling them or entirely restoring the directory. It may work, and iMessage may resume normal operation.

However, before doing any of the above, ensure that there is no issue with your Apple ID on your Mac laptop. Navigate to Apple Menu > System Preferences > iCloud Settings and verify that your Mac is using the same Apple ID as the other devices. If not, this might be the reason why iMessage is not in sync and functioning properly. As a result, ensure that the correct Apple ID is enabled here.

4. Purge Caches

In the context of iMessage, cache refers to your communication history. Thus, wiping the cache implies that you’ll lose all chats outside of this device as well. However, if attempted, it may out to be highly successful.

  • Navigate to and open Finder.
  • To swiftly navigate through the results in Find, hold down Command + Shift + G simultaneously, type /Library/Messages/ in the box, then click Go.
  • Following that, locate and remove all files in the directories “chat.db”, “chat.db-wal”, and “chat.db-shm” in the list.
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You may then empty your device’s Trash bin to totally and permanently remove the deleted data.

5. Disable/Re-enable iMessage or Sign Out/Re-login

Attempting to re-engage things from the beginning also frequently works.

  • Messages may be accessed using the Apple menu.
  • To access iMessage preferences, navigate to Preferences > iMessage.
  • Uncheck the Enable iCloud Messages box or hit the Sign Out button to terminate the service on your Mac. (If the box is already unchecked, it indicates that the service was already deactivated, and re-enabling it should suffice).
  • Restart your laptop.
  • Finally, repeat all of the steps, tick that box again (re-login if you signed out in step 3), close and reopen the Messages app. Hopefully, things will improve now.

FAQs on Why Isn’t My iMessage Working On My Laptop?

How can I configure my laptop’s iMessage?

Configuring iMessage on a laptop is a quick and uncomplicated process. This is how you do it:
Open the Messages app through the Apple menu or Finder > select Preferences > iMessage > enter your Apple ID and password > and lastly, follow the on-screen directions to complete two-step verification (if asked). That is all that is required to configure iMessage on a laptop.

How do I sync my iPhone and MacBook messages?

To begin, open the Settings app on your iPhone > select Messages > toggle on iMessage and press Send & Receive > sign in with your Apple ID > Ensure that all of your contact information, including your phone number, email address, and Apple ID, is checked under You may receive iMessages from and reply from > and lastly, enter your phone number (or email address, if you like) in the box labeled Start new conversations from.
Return to the main settings menu and tap on FaceTime to verify that your contact information is verified here.
Following that, repeat the procedures outlined in the preceding question to access iMessage on your MacBook, being sure to sign in using the same Apple ID as you did on your iPhone. Additionally, verify the other data (e.g., those under You may be contacted for messages at and Begin conversations from, etc.) to ensure that everything is identical to what was on your iPhone.
That is all. All of your iPhone texts, for example, are now in sync and connected to your MacBook.


Final Remarks – Why Isn’t My iMessage Working On My Laptop?

Consider these bonus tips

There are several reasons why iMessage may stop working on a Mac laptop, and there are also numerous solutions to resolve the issue. Though the most essential reasons and answers have previously been explored, here are some more points to consider in this regard:

  • Access and inspect Keychain Access for iMessage encryption schematics on your Mac. If you discover a list of encryption keys therein, that is OK. Otherwise, you’re dealing with an iMessage encryption issue.
  • Resetting your device’s network settings may also be beneficial in resolving a variety of network connections and associated issues.
  • Check to see whether the date, time, and time zone settings on your laptop have changed for any reason. If that is the case, iMessage is very certainly not working as a result. Correct them.
  • Ensure that the “message forwarding and relay” option is active on other devices if you’re also using an iPhone, iPad, or similar device, or you’ll be unable to message via your laptop.

If nothing else works, consult Apple’s official system status page to see whether the issue is not a macro-level one caused by server failures, etc.

I hope you’ve received an answer to your query “why isn’t my iMessage working on my laptop?” up to this point. If not, please let me know what difficulty you’re having with the service so that we can address it in the future update.


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Avatar for William Larson

William Larson is a computer engineering graduate and a techy writer and a laptop enthusiast based in New York who is the man behind BestLaptopVenture.com, where he reviews and writes professionally about laptops & cutting-edge technology with more than 7 years of experience in the industry. He tends to spend most of his time researching the best laptops. His love for studying laptops enables him to assist others to find the best laptops. He has written and managed content for tech websites like Laptops, Computers, T-Sprint, and TracFone Wireless, etc. We are playing together as a duo. Here are some tips and tricks that will make your life easier while using a computer.

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