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Common Slack problems and how to fix them

Slack may be a popular work chat app, but it’s not without issues. If you work from home or if Slack just happens to be the best way to communicate to your coworkers, then you know how important it is for the app to run smoothly. But in the event it doesn’t, we’ve got your back. In this guide, we’re taking a look at five of the most common Slack problems and showing you how to fix them, so you can get your workday up and running again.

Trouble with connecting to Slack

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One of the most common issues with Slack is connectivity. And while there have been instances of the entire platform being down, connectivity issues don’t just stem from worldwide outages. It’s also possible that your connection issues could be on your end. If you’re having trouble connecting to Slack, the first thing you need to do is check your own connection. Check your own connection by attempting to load another website in your browser. Slack also recommends checking your connection to its service by using its own connection test, which can be accessed at slack.com/help/test.

If your connection passes the two tests above, then it’s likely that Slack is experiencing its own platform-wide outage and you’ll have to wait until Slack resolves it. You can confirm such an outage by visiting a website like Downdetector, which will allow you to look up the current outage status of services like Slack.

If your connection is the problem, then you’ll need to reset your internet connection and then restart Slack. In most cases, this should resolve your connectivity problem.

Too many notifications

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You’ve just been enrolled in your company’s Slack workspace and have been invited to a number of channels so you can keep up with the goings-on at your job. Which is great except for the fact that now you’re getting what seems like a million notifications on your computer and phone every time a coworker says something, even when it has nothing to do with you. Here are a few ways to reduce them. The three most effective methods are: Do Not Disturb, leaving a channel, or just muting a channel.

Enabling the Do Not Disturb (DND) feature is great if you need to temporarily mute all notifications. To do so, just select the bell icon in the top left corner and then choose an appropriate time period from the menu that pops up.

You can also just leave a channel if you think most of the messages in it don’t really concern you. When you want to leave a channel, just right-click on the channel’s name in your sidebar and select the Leave #name-of-your-channel option from the menu that appears. You should be able to join the channel again if you need to do so later.

You also have the option to mute a channel. If you mute a channel, you won’t receive notifications from it even in situations where you’re mentioned. To mute (or unmute) a channel, you can just right-click on a channel’s name in the sidebar and choose the Mute or Unmute option from the menu that pops up.

Audio issues in Slack calls

Maybe you’re on a Slack video call but you’re having trouble hearing the people on the on the other end. Or they’re having trouble hearing you. If you’re having audio issues with your Slack calls, there are a few troubleshooting methods you can try. According to Slack’s Help Center, you have three options if you’re placing calls via the Slack desktop app: reviewing your call’s audio settings in the app, restarting the app, or reviewing your device’s audio settings. You can review your call’s audio settings in the Slack app by selecting the call window’s gear-shaped icon. From there, you should confirm that the correct input/output devices are chosen. You can also just restart the Slack app to see if that helps the problem. And lastly, you might want to also review your device’s audio settings to make sure that your hardware isn’t being muted there.

If you’re placing Slack calls via Google Chrome, you may want to close the browser, open it again, and then reload Slack within the browser.

Searching for a specific message (among the many you receive)

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If you’re searching for a specific Slack message, scrolling through your channels to find it can seem daunting. But you don’t have to live like that. You can always search for a message by using the Search box at the top of the screen. When searching Slack this way, you also have access to filters and modifiers that can help you narrow down your results by things like people, channels, or time periods.

And as a preventive measure, you can also pin important messages to the top of a conversation or channel so that you or others can review them later if needed. You can pin messages by hovering over it and selecting the More actions (three vertical dots) icon that pops up. Once you select that icon, a menu should appear. Choose the Pin to option from that menu. When you want to view a pinned message in a channel or conversation, just select the pushpin icon at the top of the channel or conversation. You’ll be taken to a screen that shows all the pinned messages from that channel or direct message.

Notifications that remain even after you check your messages

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Normally when you receive a notification about an unread message, the little notification icon disappears when you read the message. But sometimes it doesn’t disappear and it makes it look like you have more unread messages, even when you don’t. Here’s how to refresh your notifications in Slack. According to the Help Center, the main thing to do is clear your Slack app’s cache. Clearing the cache should refresh your notifications and have them functioning normally again.

In the Slack desktop app, you can clear your cache by tapping on the three horizontal lines icon in the top left corner of your screen. Then select Help > Troubleshooting > Clear Cache and Restart.

In the Slack Android app, select the three vertical dots icon, then Settings > Advanced > Reset cache.

For the iOS Slack app, you’ll actually visit your iOS device’s Settings app. Then you’ll select Slack > Reset Cache on Next Launch. Then open the Slack app again.

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