One admin gets notifications for topics and private messages

Dear everyone,

In my instance of Discourse I am one of few admins and one of many moderators.

Since updating to 1.6.0.beta11 I receive notifications on the forum and via email for many old and new topics and some private messages. I am the only user for whom this is the case.

These notifications include:

  • Welcome messages sent to each new user.
  • Edits of existing topics.
  • Private messages sent by other moderators to regular users.

All these notifications are marked as “New Topic” (cf. screenshot):

My notification preferences don’t seem to include a setting which should trigger such behavior.

Here on meta, I’ve found other people complaining about Welcome messages spamming their notifications. However these seem to be other problems (and they seem to have been resolved long ago).

Neither my colleagues nor me could figure out what is wrong and why I am the only admin/moderator receiving these notifications.

Does anyone know a possible cause of this issue? I happily provide you with more information if necessary.



That is the Watch First Post setting. Do you have that set anywhere, on any category?


Very odd that we would see dupe notifications here, something seems buggy

I’ve never consciously set that anywhere. Is there an automatic way of doing so?

The field in my preferences which looks most likely to list these topics is empty (as are all other fields concerning notifications):

Is there anything I can do to help narrowing down what’s wrong?

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@eviltrout I bet this is an edge case around having watch first post enabled on group, was this implemented?

fwiw I’m getting random “First post in topic” notifications from categories where I haven’t set them (and not for the groups I did set them) too.


As a workaround I’ve now revoked admin rights from my account. This doesn’t solve the issue but renders notifications usable again.

me too getting first post notifications.

Since now only I launching my site am the only admin & moderator. But still am getting notifications.

To be clear: you don’t have any groups, categories or tags set up to notify you on first post, but you’re getting the notifications anyway? That seems quite weird.

As I said above: I don’t think so but am not sure how to confirm. Is the screenshot I posted not enough evidence?

Yes, I was (‘was’ because this user is not admin anymore) still getting notifications.

Another indicator that this is a bug (or feature?): This behavior started exactly after we had updated to 1.6.0.beta11. I didn’t change any preferences at that time but woke up to a swamp of notifications.

Exactly. That’s why I’m whining about it too :slight_smile:

Unfortunately not, that only shows it for categories - which admittedly is the easiest and most popular way to watch the first post. You could also have it enabled by tag or by group.

Honestly though neither of those should have been disabled if you were an admin. I think unless I can peek in your database I don’t think I’ll be able to figure out what happened :sadpanda:

Is this rhetorical or do you actually want to have a look? I can poke our sysadmin and see whether this is possible.

I’ll definitely take a look if you can let me in! Just access to the database or rails console should do.


Thanks for the offer. Unfortunately the people responsible here decided that this is not an option for us.

I will leave it at this for the moment since there doesn’t seem to be anything to do for me (and I’m not personally affected anymore without admin rights).

Okay, we’ll leave this open and hope other people can report the bug so we can isolate it and fix it.

If you think my situation is the same as @jftr’s

I could provide an sql backup (about 200mb)?

Awesome, would love to review it. A full discourse backup would be easier for me if that’s an option.

Replied privately to you.

Thanks to @carlokok I was able to figure out what was wrong in his case. If you had been set up to follow a group as “First Post Only” it was creating too many notifications. I’ve fixed it in this commit:

A secondary fix for this on my list is to show the groups and tags you are subscribed to in this way on your preferences page too, in case you have subscribed to some accidentally. In @carlokok’s case he wasn’t but I suspect some other users might be.


@eviltrout One note with my testcase: I did not get notifications for the groups I was subscribed to even though I should have. Not sure if your fix covers that. (for first posts only, regular watching seemed fine)