How to Remove Chat from the Gmail Sidebar

Between voice calling and instant messaging, Gmail’s sidebar chat box might be really useful. But, if you don’t use it the thing is just taking up space.

Tired of seeing that pesky chat window on the left side of Gmail? There are plenty of reasons to get rid of it. Perhaps you have Google Talk installed, perhaps you don’t like instant messaging, or maybe you just use a different service. Getting rid of the chatbox is easy, just follow these simple steps.

Remove Chat Sidebar from Gmail

Log in to Gmail as you normally would, and then click the Gear (settings) button at the top-right of the window and select Settings.

gmail settings button

Click the Chat tab and select the Chat Off bullet option.

gmail disable chat

gmail sidebar with chat removedScroll down to the bottom and Save Changes.

save gmail changes

Done! Now Gmail will no longer pester you with annoying chat requests and you’ll have that much more room on your sidebar.

If you are working on a smaller screen, this is quite a luxury. The only downside is that you won’t be able to make Voice Calls via Google Voice anymore, but you can still install the Google Voice extension and send text messages.



  1. jdjcpa

    It still leaves the space at the side of the screen, only it is empty. I’m about ready to quit gmail over this. Someone let them know they’re causing grief over this.

    • JasonR

      jdjcpa that is my experience as well (still) 1 yr later. very annoying when throwing the gmail window to the side for a 1/2 display. all that wasted space with the sidebar.

    • Hung

      Go to Gmail Setting -> Labs -> Search “Right side chat” -> Turn off -> save and enjoy

      • alison

        thanks @Hung. it’s really worked… Thanks a lot..

        • Mary McHenry

          Yes it worked and thank you so much!! Now…do you have a fix for the annoying pop up that shows up each time you make any changes to your email…delete, move, etc??? Why is Gmail doing all this, without giving you the ability to opt out???

    • kathy lawton

      it’s much better than before. My sent mail and spam didn’t even fit.
      So glad to be rid of chat.

  2. Hung

    Go to Gmail Setting -> Labs -> Search “Right side chat” -> Turn off -> save and enjoy

    • Karl

      That’s the ticket. Thanks!

    • n1b5

      Reeeeeeeeesult! At last. Good work, thanks.

  3. JasonR

    Hung: this solution does not free up the space previously occupied by the gchat sidebar unfortunately.

  4. sasha

    I tried to get rid of the Chat side. Gmail does not allow me to save the setting. Really a nuisance that takes up too much of screen space. Any idea, please share.

  5. Hung PT

    Please Try Again.
    1. First change your theme to Classic
    2. Go go setting -> Chat -> Turn on.
    3. Then go to Lab Search keyword below
    “Right side chat” just a Lab which hidden in GG.
    Then turn off

  6. Gisel

    THANKS!!!!! I’ve been trying everything! Thanks a lot!! I hated that window.

  7. Joseph dipi


  8. Mike

    I just found this explanation while looking for another one. Couldn’t figure out the right question to search for getting rid of that beast.

  9. Carol Farr

    Thanks very much for putting that up. It worked.

    The chat box was not only annoying, but blocked access to all my folders and i couldn’t see how to get rid of it.

    I appreciate your time to post this.

    Carol Farr

  10. Patti J

    Thank you!

  11. Glenn

    Thank you! This works.

  12. carl

    Got rid of it yesterday, but today it is back. And Chat is off. What now. Can’t seem to get rid of it.

  13. K

    I got rid of Chat — now there’s an intrusion for Meetings with no obvious way to get rid of it. How do you get rid of Meetings? Turning off Chat doesn’t do it.

    • closeupman

      Should be same location K, but says hide meet

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