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Google Talk (chat)

Google talk is an instant messaging application available via Gmail, Google+, or the stand-alone Google Talk app. Google Talk is only enabled for staff. For additional information regarding Google Talk, see the Google Talk help page.

Who can chat with me?

Google will automatically add users (staff only) that you frequently email to your chat list. To limit who can chat with you:
  1. Click the icon next to your name at the top of the chat box
  2. Click Chat Settings
  3. Click Only allow people that I've explicitly approved to chat with me and see when I'm online.
  4. Click Save Changes
To chat with a user not displayed in your list, type their name or email address in the search box below your name, and then click Invite to chat. Invitations are automatically accepted between Orono users, unless a user has restricted their access as above.

Status Messages

The circle icon next to a user names indicates whether they are available to chat. You can set your own status by click the icon next to your name at the top of the chat box.

Chat box
Green Icon
Available (Green)
All of your contacts that are available to talk will appear at the top of your Friends list, with a green ball next to each of their names.

Red Icon
Unavailable (Red)

A red ball next to someone's name lets you know that person has designated themself as Busy.

Yellow Icon
Idle (Yellow)

When a user has not been active for some time, you'll see a yellow ball next to his or her name. This indicates they are likely not at their computer, though they are logged in to chat.

Gray Icon
Offline / Invisible (Gray)

When a user is not signed into chat, a gray ball will appear next to their name.

How to set your status

To set your status and/or to add a custom message to your status, click the icon next to your name and either select a default status (no message) or select Custom Message to set a staus and a message.

You can also update your photo and access chat settings from this menu.

Disable Chat

  1. Click the icon next to your name at the top of the chat box
  2. Click Chat Settings
  3. Click Chat Off
  4. Click Save Changes



  1. Click the icon next to your name at the top of the chat box
  2. Click Chat Settings
  3. Click Sounds Off to disable sound notifications
  4. Click Save Changes

Desktop Messages

Desktop notifications display a box in the corner of your computer screen when someone sends you an instant message. These messages appear even if your browser is minimized. These messages are disabled by default; to enable desktop notifications, you must be using Chrome and turn on the notifcations on your gmail settings. Alternatively, you can also download the Google Talk app, to get notification without Chrome.
  1. Click the gear icon in the upper right of your inbox
  2. Click Settings
  3. In the Desktop Notifications section, set whether Chat Nofications should be on or off (must be using Chrome to receive pop-ups)
  4. Click Save Changes

Video & Voice Chat

Download the Video and Voice Chat plugin to use Google Talk for video conferencing. This is required for Google Hangouts.

Video Tutorials