Advanced search operators are query words or symbols that perform special actions in Gmail search. These operators allow you to find what you're looking for quickly and accurately. They can also be used to set up filters so you can organize your inbox automatically. Some of the most useful operators are listed below. For these instructions, please log in to your Gmail account. If you do not know how to log in to your OC email account, please see our instructions on how to Access Google Apps.
Meaning: all messages from Amy
Meaning: messages that were sent to David (by you or someone else)
Meaning: messages that have the word "dinner" in the subject
OR must be in ALL CAPS
Example: from:amy OR from:david
Meaning: messages from Amy or from David
Operator: - (hyphen)
Example: dinner -movie
Meaning: Messages that contain the word "dinner" but do not contain the word "movie"
Example: from:amy label:friends
Meaning: Messages from Amy that have the label "friends"
Example: from:david label:my-family
Meaning: Messages from David that have the label "My Family"
(There is not a search operator for unlabeled messages)
Example: from:david has:attachment
Meaning: Messages from David that have an attachment
Meaning: Messages with an attachment named "physicshomework.txt"
Example: label:work filename:pdf
Meaning: Messages labeled "work" that also have a PDF file as an attachment
Operator: " " (quotes)
Example: "i'm feeling lucky"
Meaning: Messages containing the phrase "i'm feeling lucky" or "I'm feeling lucky"
Example: subject:"dinner and a movie"
Meaning: Messages containing the phrase "dinner and a movie" in the subject
(Capitalization isn't taken into consideration
Operator: ( )
Example: from:amy (dinner OR movie)
Meaning: Messages from Amy that contain the word "dinner" or the word "movie"
Example: subject: (dinner movie)
Meaning: Messages in which the subject contains both the word "dinner" and the word "movie"
Example: in:anywhere movie
Meaning: Messages in All Mail, Spam, and Trash that contain the word "movie"
(Messages in Spam and Trash are excluded from searches by default - you must add this operator to search there)
Operator: in:inbox in:trash in:spam
Example: in:trash from:amy
Meaning: Messages from Amy that are in Trash
Operator: is:important label:important
Example is:important from:janet
Meaning: Messages from Janet that were marked as important by Priority Inbox
Operator: is:starred is:unread is:read
Example: is:read is:starred from:David
Meaning: Messages from David that have been read and are marked with a star
Operator: has:yellow-star has:red-star has:orange-star, etc
Example: has:purple-star from:david
Meaning: Messages from David that are marked with a purple star
Operator: cc: bcc:
Meaning: Messages that were cc-ed to David
(Search on bcc: cannot retrieve messages on which you were blind carbon copied)
Operator: after: before:
Example: after:2004/04/16 before:2004/04/18
Meaning: Messages sent between April 16, 2004 and April 18. 2004
Example: is:chat monkey
Meaning: any chat message including the work "monkey"
Meaning: Any message that was sent by a person in your "Friends" circle
Example: circle:"soccer friends (team blue)" or circle:"my\"fab four\""
Notes: For circle names that include a space, parentheses, curly brackets, or vertical bar, add quotes around the name. For names that includes quotes, add a back slash immediately before the quotes.