How to Fix iMessage Not Working on Mac

While iMessage on Mac is undoubtedly a useful feature, it’s not immune to bugs. Not only were there complaints about sending messages, but some users also reported problems receiving messages. 

Several things could be the culprit; Luckily, we’ve prepared this comprehensive guide to fix iMessage not working on your Mac.

  1. Reboot your Mac
  2. Forced Logout Messages
  3. Quit messages
  4. Turn on your iMessage account
  5. Is your Mac connected to the Internet?
  6. Recover Access to Keychain on Mac
  7. Make sure both devices have the same accounts
  8. Set automatic date and time on Mac
  9. Update your Mac to the latest version
  10. Reset NVRAM

1. Restart your Mac.

Restarting your Mac is by far the most tried and tested solution available to you. A fresh reboot can fix a variety of issues including Mac iMessage issues. Click the Apple logo in the menu bar and then click Restart … 

Once your Mac starts up again, launch iMessage to make sure it is working as expected. If not, try the next tip.

2. Force close messages

  1. Click the Apple logo in the menu bar and select Force Quit … 
  2. Now select “Messages” and click “Force Quit” at the bottom of the screen.

This will restart your iMessage app on Mac. Hope this is the answer to your problems. Otherwise, there is always tip number three.

3. Exit messages.

  1. Click Messages in the menu bar and select Preferences.
    Choose Preferences from the Messages menu on Mac

  2. Now on the iMessage tab, click the Sign Out button.
    Click Sign Out on the iMessage tab on your Mac.

Now login again and check iMessage to see if it works or not.

4. Turn on your iMessage account.

If this setting is not enabled, your iMessage won’t work, no matter how hard you try! Open the “Settings” window and select the “Accounts” tab. Now check the box next to “Enable this account” if it is not already checked. Ready!

5. Is your Mac connected to the Internet?

Make sure your Mac is connected to the Internet. It can sometimes show that your Mac is connected, although there are actually issues blocking iMessage from working. Try to reconnect to the Internet or restart your router or Wi-Fi hotspot. After that, open your browser and visit any website to check if it works.

6. Restore access to the Keychain on your Mac.

This is a proven solution for when your Mac’s iMessage stops working with you.

  1. Go to Launchpad and click Keychain Access.
    Click Keychain Access in the Launch Bar on your Mac.

  2. Now click on File and block Keychain Access.
    Click Block Keychain Login in Keychain Access on Mac.

  3. After a while, you will need to unlock it again and enter the password when it asks.

Many users in various forums and websites take this approach, so we think it’s worth giving it a try. If iMessage still doesn’t work on your Mac, check out the next tip.

7. Make sure both devices have the same account.

To sync iMessage properly, you need to make sure the Apple accounts on your Mac and iOS devices are the same. If they don’t match, the messages won’t sync with your iDevice and stop working.

To check iOS or iPadOS, go to Settings → Messages → Send and Receive. Check which account you are using on your iPhone or iPad.

Mac users can check this by going to Messages → Preferences → Select iMessage Tab. Make sure both accounts are the same. Otherwise, iMessage won’t be able to work on your Mac.

8. Set automatic date and time on Mac.

We’ve noticed that setting the date and time can cause a lot of problems. Setting them to automatic can fix problems on your Mac, and the same goes for cases where you can’t send or receive iMessage messages on your iPhone or iPad.

To fix this issue, click the Apple logo → System Preferences → Date and Time → Time Zone tab, and then select the Set date and time automatically checkbox if it is not already checked.

If it’s already selected, uncheck the box, wait a few seconds, and then check it again. This will automatically set the time and date. Now launch Messages and see if this works.

9. Update your Mac to the latest version.

Updating macOS is one of the best ways to make sure you don’t run into any issues with your day to day driver apps like Messages, Safari, etc.

Go to System Preferences → Software Update and check for the latest version. If a new version is available, click Update Now.

10. Reset NVRAM.

NVRAM, or Non-Volatile Random Access Memory, stores a small amount of memory that includes certain settings. To reset NVRAM, first shut down your Mac. When you turn it on, immediately hold down the Option + Command + P + R keys for about 20 seconds.

You can release the keys as soon as you hear the startup sound a second time, or after the Apple logo appears and disappears a second time. Make sure you disable the firmware password if your Mac uses one, otherwise this keyboard shortcut won’t do anything useful!

That’s it guys!

I hope one of these tips fixed iMessage not working on your Mac. If nothing works for you, it’s time to contact Apple Support (but this should be your last option).