What can I do with Google Chat?
Google Chat is the recommended Chat (messaging) app for the university. It comes standard with all university Google accounts.
With Google Chat, you can:
- Have direct message (1:1) chats with anyone who has a Gmail account whether that is a nd.edu account or not
- Have group chats. You can chat with 2 or more people at one time
- Create a Room - Rooms are typically used for ongoing, long-term chats. For example, you can create a Room for chats with your team or for a committee or project group
There are 4 ways you can interact with Google Chat:
- Use Chat on the web. In Chrome, open a new tab and enter: chat.google.com You may have to log in to your ND account
- Within Gmail, you can enable Chat so that it appears in the left-pane of Gmail on the web. Gear icon > Settings > Chat tab. See this Google article on using Chat within Gmail
- Install the standalone app on your machine. See this Google link for instructions
- Install the app for your mobile device from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store
App icon for mobile devices:
Within Gmail - Ability to Hide Chat from the left pane
- To Hide Chat and/or Meet on the left-side pane in Gmail, see this link from Google.
- To use Chat Rooms as a workspace within Gmail, you must enable Chat in Gmail (i.e. not hide it); see this link for more on Chat Room workspaces
Known issues with the Chat standalone app
- You need Chrome 73 or higher installed on your computer. Chrome doesn't have to be your default browser to use the new standalone app.
- To use the new standalone app, the Chrome browser needs to be open
- To comply with information security best practices, all chat message history will be automatically deleted after 180 days.
- This applies to new Rooms as well as Rooms that you may have created if you’re already using Google Chat. If you want to save any/all of your Room message history, we recommend that you copy/paste what you want into a document for future reference. Note: Chat Room history is not available for search in Gmail
- For Direct Messages, chat history is searchable in Gmail, but the messages will disappear from Gmail after 180 days
- See this article for how to set/allow notifications from your browser. In the linked article, at the bottom is a link to how to set Google Chat notifications (click the gear icon in Chat) as well as how to troubleshoot issues if you are not getting chat notifications.
Inviting People outside nd.edu to Chat
There are several limitations and information about this ability so it is best to review this support page from Google as these items may change over time. A few other highlights:
- We do have the setting enabled that allows you to chat with someone outside nd.edu
- You can send direct messages to other Google customers outside nd.edu accounts. There’s also the ability to add people outside ND to Chat Rooms.
- You can't add an external account to a current Chat Group. You can only chat externally with a 1:1 direct message or in a Chat Room. You will need to make a new Group if you want to include people outside nd.edu
- The person outside nd.edu that you are inviting to Chat must have a Google Account, and they will be marked with a yellow “External” badge in Chat to make sure you’re sharing information with the right people.
- Additionally, you’ll need to designate a room as External when you create it, and you won’t be able to change this setting after the room is created. This means you won’t be able to add external users to any rooms created before this launch, as those will remain Internal.
- You can't turn an existing Chat Room into an external Chat Room. To create an external room, you'll need to recreate existing rooms and add external users
What about Google Hangouts?
Google has rebranded Hangouts Chat to Classic Hangouts and will retire the service in late 2022. Please note, Google is retiring the Hangouts chat/messaging service not the video conferencing service known as Google Meet
For more on Google Hangouts including information on what Hangouts history will be copied/migrated to Google Chat, please see this article.
What about my standalone Hangouts Window?
This will go away as we will do this cutover. For similar functionality within Google Chat, install the Google Chat standalone app. This will install on your desktop and when you work with Chat this way, it opens a separate window from your browser. See this Google link for the install instructions
Hangouts to Chat Transition - Known limitations
- See this link
- Some features in Classic Hangouts aren’t available in Chat, such as read receipts, profile avatars and snippets in the list view, and custom status messages.
- The default Chat notification is New threads, threads I'm following, and direct messages, which is different than Classic Hangouts. To change chat notifications, click the gear icon.
What about Slack?
Slack is not an enterprise service here at Notre Dame which means we have not completed a security review nor have a signed agreement for all faculty/staff with Slack. We have several groups and departments using Slack as a paid service as well as many people using Slack with free accounts. While we cannot stop people from using Slack, this is not a supported service nor can we help should any issues arise with regards to licensing and/or security issues. Until, and if, we review Slack for campus use, you are taking the risk of using this service with your Notre Dame account.