[HOWTO] Delete all unstarred emails from Inbox or Label in GMail

Its easy to delete all mails from a label/folder or inbox, but sometimes we’d like to save our starred mails and delete all the rest. The search box in gmail comes in handy in such situations. Its really a very powerful tool with various operators to make the search more efficient. The gmail search really gives it an edge over other free email applications.

I have subscribed to one of the yahoo groups and over time it has accumulated over 9000 mails. I quite frequently star the mails which I like. I wanted to delete the rest. To do that I just typed “label:techgroup -is:starred” without quotes in the search bar and clicked on Search. It displayed all the emails from that label which isn’t starred. Notice the hyphen, it means exclude.

Explanation

Its really simple and I doubt anyone would be needing this section.
label:techgroup means we want to display all the mails from label techgroup.
is:starred means we want to display all starred mails form the label.
But the – infront of is:starred negates what it does. It means we want to exclude starred items from the search results. So we get unstarred mails from label techgroup.

After making the search, click on the checkbox beside the ‘Archive’ button to select all the emails on that page. You’ll get another option just above the search result which would say:

All 20 conversations on this page are selected. Select all conversations that match this search

Click on ‘Select all conversations that match this search’. This will select all the matched results. Click on ‘Delete’ and empty the trash if you want.

Read more about the advanced search in gmail.

Cheers!

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