Red Duck Studios

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Import/Export your filters in Gmail

This is a great new feature just announced on the Gmail blog. It is good news for me seeing as I have been using Gmail exclusively for email for as long as I can remember and my list of filters is pretty long. I had always wondered what i would do if I lost my filters and had to look at all my mail in my Inbox. Good to know i have a backup now should that ever happen.

There is more we can do with this feature though other then create a backup. If your organization uses mailing lists for incoming mail you can now create sets of filters for each list and share them among your users. Now everyone can have the same filters and labels setup across your business. This should make training new users much easier for those wise enough to be using Gmail in their office. Of course this assumes your lucky enough to already be using Gmail and in your office and not Outlook like most people.

Once you have enabled Import / Export in your Gmail labs settings page navigate to Settings then Filters. Next use the check boxes to select the filters related to the mailing list then click export at the bottom of the page. Now save the file and send it to the other people that are on the list (or just send it to the list!). They can now import your filters into their Gmail account and will have the same setup as you.

It may seem like a small feature, but its importance from an IT management perspective is great. This is leverage for all those out there trying to convince the higher ups to switch to Gmail/Google Docs over Office. It will allow you to lower your setup times for new users and make training them much easier. How could they argue with that?