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Tips for using Gmail

Gmail users: do you find that your Inbox is over-full all the time? The Librarian in Black blog recently posted a link to “10 Steps to a Gmail Makeover” by Lisa Thumann. The tips include color-coding and archiving messages, using Gmail’s filtering feature, and being decisive about deleting messages that are no longer needed (do you really need that conference registration confirmation from two years ago?).

Another quick way to pare down the number of email messages is to occasionally change the viewing option to sort by sender. Look for the unable-to-deliver messages by the name “mailer-daemon.” After updating your address book to change or delete these recipients you can delete these messages en-masse. Then re-sort your messages by Subject. Often you will find numerous emails that have bounced back-and-forth between you and another; delete all but the last one.

Do you have a hard time deleting any messages? Sort your Inbox in chronological order and go to the oldest messages first. You will quickly see many messages that you really don’t need any more. Have a few messages that you need to refer to on a regular or irregular basis, such as those containing account-setup information? Create an archive folder and call it “Reference”, or some similar term. Then move these old-but-necessary messages out of your Inbox and into your Reference folder. You will know right where to find them in the future, and they will show up when you search for them.

Have a great weekend!

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