Posted by: kurtsh | July 8, 2019

HOWTO: “Appear Offline” in Microsoft Teams for Windows

imageSome Microsoft UC old timers may recall Microsoft Lync used to have a ‘lurker’ feature hidden that enabled the end user to “appear offline”.  The same feature currently exists for Microsoft Teams.

Setting a Teams client to “appear offline” requires going to the Microsoft Teams client for Windows and opening a hidden diagnostic menu.

The systray icon for Teams usually has a pretty spartan menu however if you do the following, a much larger menu is revealed:

    1. imageClick on the Teams icon in the client Systray 5 times.
    2. Right click on the Teams icon. This should reveal the hidden “Extended Diagnostics” menu for the Teams client.  There’s a couple interesting items that should show up including “Open chrome://page”, “Update rollback” and one called “Status Indicator
    3. Click on “Status Indicator”. This enables you to access a secondary menu that has a number entries in it.


  • Click on imagestatusIndicatorState:offline”.  You’ll notice that the status indicator icon on the Teams systray icon is an “empty circle” indicating you’re now presenting yourself as “offline”

To be clear, despite looking to the outside world like you’re not logged in, you are still very much logged into Microsoft Teams.  You can see chats/IMs & access Teams resources.  You can also see who is currently online while appearing to be offline.  (Hence the term, “Lurker” mode is often used for this)


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