Organizing your inbox with rules

Rules can be used to automatically perform actions on mail being delivered to your account, like moving them into a folder, or forwarding them to another account. Rules are created from your settings screen on the interface, but they still function even if you use a mail client to read your mail.

A rule has two parts: (a set of) conditions that a message must have for a rule to take place, and the actions to take when a message matches the condition(s).

Rules only apply to new mail as it arrives. You can't use rules to make changes to mail that's already in your mailbox.

Creating a new rule

There are two ways to create a new rule:

  1. Create a new rule based on the current message
  2. Create a new rule from the Settings → Rules screen.

Creating rules from the current message

When viewing a message, use the grey More button at the top right hand side of the email message, then the Add Rule from Message... option to open the screen. This lets you quickly build a rule based on the sender, recipient, subject, or mailing list ID of the current message.

The "condition" section lets you choose when this rule will take effect. A condition can include multiple parts of a message, and you can decide whether all conditions must be met or any (at least one) condition must be met for the rule to take effect. You can also choose none (the rule will take effect any time that none of the conditions are true).

The "action" section lets you choose what will happen to a message if it meets the rule conditions.

Once the rule is created and saved, you can find the rule in the Settings → Rules screen, where it can be changed.

Creating rules in the Settings screen

To edit rules or create a new rule from scratch, open the Settings → Rules screen. There are three sections:

  1. Discard — if a message matches any of the rules you add in this section, it will automatically be permanently deleted and you will never see it. No other rules will take effect, even if they would have otherwise.

    For extra safety if you use discard rules, tick the option "Do not discard messages sent by my contacts". This will help make sure you don't accidentally discard important email.

  2. Forward — send all or some of your email to another account. If you select the option to delete the message, the message will be permanently deleted from your account after it has been forwarded, unless an "Organize" rule applies to the message. In this case, it will be delivered to the appropriate folder as specified by the Organize rule.

  3. Organize — move incoming messages to a specific folder other than the Inbox, and/or automatically mark them as read or pinned. These rules are tried in the order they are created: only the first one to match applies to the message. You can drag and drop rules to change the order.

For advanced users with complex needs, use the edit custom Sieve code link to access the Sieve management page.

Lots of rules? Use the search bar to locate the one you want for easy, fast filtering.

Rule conditions

When you discard, forward, or organize your mail, you create a rule that only applies to messages which match a set of conditions.

Conditions can be combined within a single rule. Either:

Each condition can examine a different part of a message:

The tests to match against a value is tailored. You will see some of:

Rule actions

Once the rule condition has been met, the rule action is applied to the message.

You can