About Computers for Newbies & Everyone Else

October 5, 2010

Gmail Filters

Filed under: Columns — Tags: , , , — Ron @ 3:26 am

Thanks for the response to last week’s column about Gmail Aliases.  I received a “bunch” of emails regarding that feature.  And, “you are welcome” for pointing out that out to you.

I also received a lot of questions from some of you folks who are newer to Gmail about how to set up filters.  So that will be today’s topic.

To create a filter, or rule as it is called in most other email applications, you must first log into your Gmail account.

After you are in, look to the upper right portion of the screen and click on “Settings“.  Once in Settings click on the “Filters” link which should be about four over from the left.  I realize there are many other items to click but for now, stick with Filters.  If you are interested (shown via emails) I will write about some of the others in the future.

Now use the “Create a new filter” link and a new screen will open up with many text boxes available for entering information.

Here is how I created the one mentioned last week for emails sent to the alias, “” They will be forwarded to a folder or a label named, “DNR.”

In the, “To:” textbox I typed in the alias address, “”.  At this point you could click the, “Test Search” bar but it will only work if you have any emails in your account for it to find.  You may also fill in other information.  For instance, you may only want to find an email with your product or name in the body of the email. Or maybe you want to find an email from a particular person, etc.  Once you complete that setup, click, “Next Step“.

In this screen you enter what you want the specified emails to do once they arrive.  For my example, I chose to apply it to a new label named, “DNR”.  This is a label in Gmail; however, it more closely resembles a folder that will be created on the left side panel somewhere under your inbox.  Then click the, “Create Filter” link and all is done.

Now anytime an email arrives addressed to my alias address it will go to that specific label/folder.  There are many things you may use filters for in Gmail.  Try them out, but be careful.  You don’t want to automatically delete the wrong ones or mark them as “read” or you may miss the good ones.

Also, here’s one little stray thought about Gmail.  A creative technologist, Paul Truong, created a game based on Gmail.  I read in several places that he did it as a “thanks” to Google for creating and improving Gmail.  “Galactic Inbox” is a simple, quick and fun game to play.  Give it a try today at and let me know how you liked it.

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