Did you know that if you lose some of your email from your mail client, and you pop your mail from Gmail, that you can actually re-download your email from Gmail again? Not only that, but with this trick you can redownload email from specific dates – meaning you can re-download from Gmail just the email received on the dates that you want!
I’m a big fan of running all my email through Gmail to create an automatic archive – bonus, it also becomes a great spam filter (or pre-filter, if you will).
Now, what happens if your hard drive crashes, as mine did last week, and as a result you lose some of your email from your hard drive as, again, I did last week?
Here’s a little trick that I learned. Most people will tell you to just change “firstname.lastname@example.org” in your POP client to “recent:email@example.com”, and it will download all of the last 30 days’ worth of email again.
But what if you don’t want all of the last 30 days? In my case, I wanted only email after July 16 (the date of my last backup) and before July 31st (the date that my new computer went back online). So I wanted the email from July 15th through July 30th.
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Here’s the trick: Pick the dates for the email that you want to download again. Let’s say that it’s email between July 16, 2008 and July 30, 2008.
Go into Gmail, completely clear out your inbox (archive the email in it, delete it, whatever you want), and then search for this:
This will pull up all of the email that you have for the dates starting with July 16th (after 7/15) and ending with July 30 (before 7/31).
Now do a select all. Be sure that you click on the link that says “Select all conversations that match this search.”
With them all selected, from the more actions drop-down, select “mark unread”.
Now they are all marked unread.
Now select them all again (again, be sure to click on the link that says “Select all conversations that match this search”).
Now from the more actions drop-down select “move to inbox”.
At this point, all of the email you want to redownload is in your inbox, and marked as unread. Your mail client should download it all over again, as if it were brand new email.
If your mail client doesn’t automatically download it, then close and reopen your mail client, to force it to connect and download the ‘new’ email.
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