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We want an email sent when the issues is assigned, but we do not want multiple emails when changes are made. Is there any way to still allow the assigned emails to be sent but turn off the changes made emails/alerts?

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Check this solution: "Task has been Changed" Email Alerts Issue –  Vijay May 14 at 7:55
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This is part of the reason I don't like alerts. I'd turn them off and use a workflow that handles all this. When the isue is assigned, it emails the user, in a format you want, and that's it. Changes to the item don't have to trigger additional emails, unless there's something specific you want to account for where a notification might be required.

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The tasks list in SP supply notification emails in two different ways. There is a 'global' setting on the Advanced Settings page that will send an email anytime a new item is added to the list. This only fires for the new item and not when the item is updated or closed.

There is also the alert subscriptions. Alerts are more configurable including the ability to have a notification for any change to an item. These settings are available in the Document Library ribbon in the List section.

Alerts can be frustrating, but they are very configurable. In general, these settings can be configured for most of the situations I have encountered.

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