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How Do I Get a New Mail Notification for Yahoo! Mail?

Question: I’m unable to activate the new mail notification on my PC. I clicked on Control Panel and then Sound and Change. I’ve tried many times, but it just won’t work. I’m 82; I live alone; I’m dumb about PCs. Please advise on a simple way to alleviate this problem. Something was said about Messenger and I do have Yahoo Messenger, but still “no go.”

First, please don’t say that you’re dumb.

You’re not dumb about PCs. This is absolutely one of my pet peeves: in my opinion, it just doesn’t help to characterize yourself in derogatory terms like that when all that’s missing is just a little information.

As for your question, unfortunately, there’s no simple way to address that. Let me explain.

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New mail notification

Only email programs actually installed on your PC can use the new mail notification tool that you find in the Control Panel, and even then not all of them do.

More importantly That notification sound won’t work if you’re using a website to access your email. In other words, you open your web browser and go to (or Gmail or or others) to access your email that web site doesn’t use that to notify you.

Email programs vs. web-based email

Web-based email like Yahoo! Mail is not a program on your PC. It’s just a website – a page displayed in your favorite web browser. It doesn’t have the ability to run programs on your PC.

Programs on your PC would include programs like Windows Live Mail, Microsoft Office Outlook and Thunderbird. (, on the other hand, is a website.) These programs all typically have the ability to notify you when a new message is in your inbox.

Yahoo! MailUsing Yahoo Messenger

If you are looking for a way to be notified when you have new mail in your Yahoo! Mail account, Yahoo Messenger actually is one potential solution.

Yahoo Messenger is an instant messaging program. You install it on your PC and because it’s associated with your Yahoo account. Since it is a program that’s installed on your PC it has the ability to notify you when you get new mail.

In your case it sounds like you installed it, but I suspect that the notification option is turned off so Yahoo Messenger won’t notify automatically. You actually have to go into Yahoo Messenger and check the options within it. There should be an option to notify on new mail.

Add-ons, toolbars, and more

There are other approaches that sometimes will work.

  • Some browsers, such as Firefox, have add-ons. This adds software to the browser installed on your PC to notify you when you get new mail.
  • Some web-based email programs, such as Yahoo! Mail, come with a toolbar. You can install this on your PC and it will display a notification when there’s new mail.
  • You may be able to find a third-party application. Once again, this would be installed on your PC.

I understand your frustration. Email programs should be more universal. But this all has to do with the many different ways that we access email. In many cases, the different options that we want are simply not available to us.

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15 comments on “How Do I Get a New Mail Notification for Yahoo! Mail?”

  1. Be careful with third-party applications as there can be shady ones out there.

    I use Mozilla Thunderbird and get email notifications through that. Though it only works when the program is running, which is sort of unfortunate as I tend to turn it off when I need to free up system resources for games or something.

  2. suddenly my yahoo messenger stop from alerting me of incoming new mails I reset yahoo messenger upgraadd to mes 11.5? went through regular preference alert sounds procedure and no sound is there a glitch at yahoo center lately? or is it something wrong??/ I have window 7 thank you for your patience

    • I have Win7 with Yahoo Messenger 11.5 and my audible alerts for incoming emails quit last week. I have tried several times deleting Messenger and downloading again and it does not solve the problem. I have had all the correct boxes, etc checked in Messenger for mail alerts and other alerts. Still nothing.

  3. Am trying to setup e-mail, every time I fill in the required information, at the end of the process nothing appears.
    Would be grateful for your comments on this annoying glitch.

  4. With yahoo messenger.
    Can i use multiple email ids login notification at a same time ? Please answer as soon as possible.

  5. I have a similar problem with the email notification number. It’s stuck on ‘9’. It never changes even if I read every email and when I restart my computer in the morning, it still indicates ‘9’ even if there are ’20’ emails. Have followed other solutions but there’s no change. Nothing in my email settings will correct this problem. I’m using Win 8.1…..This just started this week (Sept 13).

  6. please email me with answer, trying to set my yahoo email to received it in outlook went through all the steps and still not working. So they say to upgrade to yahoo mail plus for 20 a year but when I click on upgrade it was asking for 50. So how can I get my yahoo mail over to outlook without costing so much.

  7. (Windows 7 fully updated as is Yahoo and Google +) My Yahoo Messenger hasn’t made a sound in years on ANY PC. ALL “Alerts” and “Sounds” are Checked (ON)
    and the little “Envelope” that should show up in the “Tool Bar”, is gone too.
    I couldn’t get an answer from the Yahoos on Yahoo.
    Some Rocket Scientist suggested removing Yahoo and reinstalling it. The Steps were (At that Time) Complicated and Long. I didn’t trust them.
    This is a waste of time ( Why would I need to “Backup” Yahoo and how is doing that going to fix the Sounds?
    I will not use Google Chrome! It didn’t work 12+ years ago and it still doesn’t!
    On Yahoo! Messenger Preferences;
    Alerts &Sounds
    Enable alert sounds– Checked/On.
    The “Apply” is/was Clicked
    A messenger contact goes online– Not Checked/Off.
    A messenger contact goes offline– Three boxes Not Checked/Off.
    A messenger contact buzzes me– Three boxes Not Checked/Off.
    I receive an IM or SMS Message– Both boxes are Checked/On..
    I receive a Personals alert– Three boxes are Not Checked/Off .
    I receive a Message in Yahoo Mail– Four boxes Checked/On.
    I receive a Yahoo Calendar reminder– Three boxes Checked/On.
    I receive an incoming video or voice call– One box Checked/Off.

    • Yahoo email and Yahoo messenger are two different things. So all the articles you are reading about Yahoo email will not help at all.

      There is one article on Ask Leo! which may be useful to your situation. Please check out this one on computer audio sound. It may be a setting in your computer and not in Yahoo Messenger itself:

      If that doesn’t help I agree with your Rocket Scientist who suggested that you uninstall Yahoo Messenger and install it again. Just make sure that any instructions that you are reading are about Messenger – and not about Yahoo’s email service.

  8. after so much fussing with this issue (sound alerts/notifications), I simply gave up and use my iphone’s “sound” notification for my incoming Yahoo email. I reasoned that my iphone is always sitting next to me (or close enough to hear the sound!) when I’m on my laptop or desktop, so why not let it alert me!!…

  9. All of sudden, my me comments on new, or other boards stop working. I use to get notifications someone commented on my thoughts, or opinions. But that stopped weeks agp, I do no how to restore my notifications.

    • There are two places this could be failing: on the sending side or on the receiving side. It may be that your email’s spam filter has suddenly started marking these notifications as spam. To cure that you would need to add the sending email address to your safe lists.

      It’s also possible that the board’s website has stopped sending notifications. Sending all those notifications take a lot of resources, and increase spam notifications which ends up blacklisting their serve. The designers my have decided to stop offering that service. If that is the case you can’t fix it, but might want to contact the service and find out why they stopped sending notifications.


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