Discourse messaging guide for new users

The New User Guide does not mention Messaging. Is there anything written on this in this simple tutorial mode? I need to educate my users to message instead of clogging threads with PM’s. I see that messaging is not obvious to new users on my forum, most of whom have come from old fashioned mailing lists and have never user a forum before.



We can always add this to the new user guide if that’s what you would like? I guess it depends what the users are trying to message such as a group.

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Person to person. It’s not obvious how to do this, or even that such a function exists, to newbies on the forum, I have found. Would be great to add a section to the New User Guide.


I too use to be confused until I leaned these three things.

  1. To see your mailbox like you might expect with an e-mail reader

a. Click on you user icon in the upper right

b. Click on the envelope
c. Click on the envelope a second time (It was the second click that I did not realize was needed)

This will reveal the classic e-mail app buttons such as
1. New Message - For creating a new personal message (PM)
2. Inbox - Where your received personal messages are held
3. Sent - Personal messages that you have sent. Look here if you sent something and did not yet get a reply.
4. Archive - I have not used this yet so can not elaborate.


  1. Use the theme Iconified Header Links to add the inbox to the header links, e.g.


To add this component theme requires admin access. The settings are

Header links: Personal inboxes,inbox,https://<site>/my/messages,vdm,self
svg icons: inbox

You will need to replace <site> with your specific site. For Discourse forum <site> would be meta.discourse.org and the full URL would be https://meta.discourse.org/my/messages.

Also note that the use of my instead of a specific user like me u/EricGT in the links above. It is a nice trick to remember when giving specific URLs to the site members.

  1. Using a direct URL to the messages, https://<site>/my/messages

I think it’s a bit easier to point out how to get to the messages tab of your user profile:

  • select your user avatar
  • select your username for shortcuts
  • select “messages”

If you wish to message a particular user from within a topic, it might be easier to select their avatar then select the message button.


Definitely a good idea! Maybe suggest the flag and then send @xxxxxx a message