Note: You are currently viewing documentation for Moodle 3.9. Up-to-date documentation for the latest stable version of Moodle may be available here: Messaging settings.

Messaging settings

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Messaging settings for all users

  • Users can decide how they want to be notified of new messages and event notifications by editing their messaging preferences page, which they can access either from the Preferences link in the user menu or from the gear icon in the messaging/notifications menus. See Messaging and Notifications for more information.
  • Which options they see there depend on what has been enabled by the administrator. For example, the mobile option is only available if the site is enabled for the mobile app.

Enabling / disabling messaging site wide

The personal messaging system in Moodle is enabled by default. It may be disabled by a site administrator from Site administration > Messaging > Messaging settings.

From 'Messaging settings', the administrator can "Allow site-wide messaging" (disabled by default). If this setting is enabled, users on the site can view all other users when selecting someone to message and can choose to accept messages from anyone on the site.

Notification settings

Messaging system default settings are set in 'Notification settings' in Site administration / Messaging

There are four default types of notification plugins: web, Jabber, email and mobile.

By default web and email are both enabled, though email will only work of course if the site has been properly configured to deliver email. Jabber and Mobile notifications are off by default and need to be configured first.



Jabber is the original name of the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP), an open standard instant messaging protocol. The Jabber service on the Moodle server must be configured before use. To configure Jabber, an XMPP account should be created that is specific to the Moodle server, either on a locally hosted XMPP server or on one of many public servers. The information for this account is entered in Site administration / Plugins / Message outputs / Jabber:

  • Host - The server to connect to to send jabber message notifications - this is entered as the full hostname (e.g. with no protocol (i.e. no "https://")
  • Server - XMPP host ID (can be left empty if the same as Jabber host)
  • Username - The user name to use when connecting to the Jabber server as the Moodle site, without domain name
  • Password - The password to use when connecting to the Jabber server as the Moodle site.
  • Port - defaults to 5222

Jabber configuration.png

After the Jabber service has been configured, it must also be enabled.

Each Moodle user wishing to receive instant message notifications through Jabber must create an account on a Jabber server and must configure their Moodle account to include those details:

jabber user account.png

The user must also choose which notifications to receive using Jabber:

Jabber notification preferences.png

Users may also choose to receive Moodle messages via Jabber.

Mobile notifications


The administrator can configure the site to push messages to mobile devices. Moodle pushes messages to a messaging server, which then pushes it to Apple or Google depending on the platform the target device is using (iOS or Android).

Registered sites can make use of the default messaging server which is maintained by To connect to this, click 'Request access key' and then add it to the Airnotifier access key field.

Alternatively, you may install your own private Air notifier server and use that instead. See for details.

Default notification preferences

You can specify the default notification preferences for each type of message in Site administration / Messaging / Notification settings.

You can also set to what degree each type of message is enabled, and whether users are able to change these default settings in their profiles:

  • Disallowed - This particular type of message is not allowed at all and users will not see any settings related to them. Message of the chosen type will never be delivered.
  • Permitted - Users are permitted or allowed to change the settings. When the user account is created, the new user will inherit the settings the administrator sets here, but will be allowed to change them afterwards in their Messaging settings. Messages will be delivered as the user sets them on their own Messaging settings page.
  • Locked - Users are not permitted or allowed to change these settings. When the user account is created, the new user will inherit the settings the administrator sets here and will never be allowed to change them. Messages will be delivered for all users as you set them on this page.

Logged in/Offline

You can set whether each of these will be sent when the user is online through the messaging system interface available to users in their profiles, and/or whether each output is sent via email.

Ordering of messaging settings

Because users might have many different messaging options, they are ordered into different components - for example, activities, system, enrolments etc.

Example notifications preferences screen - student view

List of message types

Except for 'Personal messages between users', which refers to the interaction messaging tool on a user profile, the other messages are generated by events in Moodle.

Module Output Name Description Recipients
Assignment Assignment notifications Student has submitted an assignment and Student has received a grade/feedback Teacher
Feedback Feedback notifications Notices from setting Enable notification of submissions Teacher, Feedback administrator
Feedback Feedback reminder Feedback non-respondent reminder message Student feedback activity non-responders
Forum Subscribed forum posts Default for forum subscription handling Anyone subscribed to a forum
Forum Subscribed forum digests Sets default for this for user profiles Authenticated users
Lesson Lesson essay graded notification Notify students a teacher has graded a Lesson essay question Student
Quiz Notification of quiz submissions Message that student has submitted a quiz Teacher
Quiz Confirmation of your own quiz submissions Notice your quiz was successfully submitted Student
Quiz Warning when your quiz attempt becomes overdue See Quiz settings Student
System Notices about minor problems ? Site administrators
System Important errors with the site Important errors - See also Debugging Site administrators
System Course creation request notification Notice a course has been requested - See Course request Defined in Site admin > Courses > Course request > Course request notification
System Course creation request approval notification Notice a requested course has been approved User who requested the course
System Course creation request rejection notification Notice a requested course has been rejected User who requested the course
System Badge recipient notifications Notify recipient of a badge when it is awarded to them Any badge recipient (typically Student role)
System Badge creator notifications Notify creator of a badge when it is awarded to someone Any badge creator (typically Teacher or Manager role)
System Insights generated by prediction models ? ?
System Message contact requests notification ? ?
System Grade notifications ? ?
System Available update notifications Notice of new releases of Moodle code Site administrators
System Backup notifications Automated backup schedule run completed Site administrators
System Comment posted on a learning plan ? ?
System Comment posted on a competency ? ?
Manual enrollment Manual enrolment expiry notifications Notice if Manual enrolment about to expire Manual enrolees
Self enrollment Self enrolment expiry notifications Notify users when their enrolment expires Enroller only, or Enroller & Enrolled user
Data privacy Data request ? ?
Data privacy Data request processing results ? ?
Data privacy Data request exceptions notifications ? ?
Inbound message configuration Warning when an inbound message could not be processed See Incoming mail configuration Authenticated Users
Inbound message configuration Confirmation that a message was successfully processed See Incoming mail configuration Authenticated Users
Inbound message configuration Personal messages between users Using the Messaging interface tool Authenticated Users
Inbound message configuration Message to confirm that an inbound message came from you See Incoming mail configuration Authenticated Users
Event monitoring Notification of rule subscriptions Notifications from Event monitoring rules Event rule subscribers

Roles and Messaging capabilities

The following capabilities can be applied as permissions to make custom changes to roles affecting messaging.


All email messages and notifications go to the email address set in a user's profile. The administrator can optionally allow users to choose to have notifications sent to a different email address. This is off by default and can be enabled in Site administration > Advanced features > Notification email override.

Users can then enter their alternative email address under Preferences/User account/Notification preferences: Click on the gear icon next to "Email" in the table header and enter the alternative email.

Note: The 'messagingallowemailoverride' setting does not affect failed log in notifications as they do not go through the messaging system, and will therefore still go to the original email specified.