If your email life takes you from one Gmail account to another, you can take your filters, laboriously entered over the years to archive, label and star automatically, with you. You can also share working filters with colleagues and friends, of course, or just keep a copy around as a backup.
Save, Export and Back Up Gmail Filters
To create an offline copy of your Gmail filters, easily imported and fit as a backup or to move the filters to another Gmail account:
- Make sure Filter Import/Export is enabled (see below).
- Follow the Settings link.
- Go to the Filters tab.
- Check all the rules you want to save.
- To check all your rules, click All under Select: at the bottom of the list.
- Click Export.
You can rename the resulting "mailFilters.xml" file, of course, keeping the ".xml" extension intact. If you export individual rules or groups for use in other accounts, giving them names that reflect their criteria or actions can be helpful in particular.
Enable Gmail Filter Import/Export
To turn on saving and importing filters in Gmail:
- Follow the Settings link in Gmail.
- Go to the Labs tab.
- Make sure Enable is selected for Filter import/export.
- Click Save Changes.
(Updated July 2011)