Gmail search tips & tricks

Posting a small collection of Gmail search tips & tricks which i recently summed up for personal use. I hope you find it useful.

Gmail search tips and tricks

  • Exact search by enclosing phrase or word within “”(quotes). For example:
    “new document” will search for exact phrase “new document”

  • You can search messages by subject. To search a message with subject “facebook” you do:
    subject: facebook

  • Searching emails received from someone:

  • To find emails sent to someone, search:

  • To find emails sent to someone as carbon copy(cc), search:

  • To find emails send to someone as blind carbon copy(bcc), search: (works on outgoing emails only)

  • Searching all message prior to a particular date:
    before:2010/01/01 (accepts date in yyyy/mm/dd)

  • Searching all message after a particular date:
    after:2010/01/01 (accepts date in yyyy/mm/dd)

  • has: and filename: to find messages with attachments.

    Searching all emails with attachments:

    Searching all emails with at least one “doc” file attached:

    More advanced file attachment search which performs search for any of pdf, doc, xls, ppt, a google doc or a google spreadsheet:
    filename:(pdf OR doc OR xls OR ppt) OR OR

  • in:
    Possible values are inbox, trash, spam and anywhere

    Searching emails in inbox:

    Searching emails in trash:

    Searching emails in spam:
    in:spam filename:jpg

    Searching emails located anywhere:
    in:anywhere “devarticles”

    In works with important, starred and muted as well. Also you can use in: to search within a label. For example, in:todo will work equally well where “todo” is the name of label i have created.

  • is:
    Possible values are starred, read, unread, chat, muted, important

    Searching starred with attachment
    is:starred has:attachment

    Searching read after a particular date and having a specific word in it:
    is:read after:2011/03/31 “devarticles”

    Searching after a particular date:
    is:unread after:2011/03/31 “devarticles”

    Searching after a particular date:
    is:unread after:2011/03/31

  • Searching for something in chat transcriptSearching for words “cpanel” and/or “ftp” within chat
    cpanel ftp is:chat

  • label: You can use label:lablename to search messages with a particular label. You can enter default Gmail labels as well as your custom created label in place of labelname. For example:

    Searching all message in inbox (Gmail label) using lable: search

    Searching all message in “Richard” (custom label) using lable: search

  • You can use hyphen “-” to skip a particular word from the search.Search emails with word sports but not baseball in its body
    sports baseball (search all emails containing word sports but not baseball)

    Search emails with word odesk but not notification in its subject:
    subject: odesk -notification

    Note that excluded word i.e. notification is followed by “-” and there is no space between hyphen(-) and notification.

  • There is a “Show search options” link to the right side of gmail search box. You can use this box to perform a custom search.There is also “Create a filter” link to the right side of search box. You can use this box to create filters which allow Gmail to manage your emails for you. Here is a nice article explaining the use of Gmail filters.

  • Simplest of simplest, enter keyword, phrase, from email address, to email addres into the search box and hit “Search Mail” button. It will return results related to the input :)

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