Dave, I’ve been experimenting with a Google Gmail account and am wondering if there’s a way that I can forward specific messages sent to that account to my regular mailbox? And if so, is there a fee or membership cost associated with it?
I too have a Gmail account and am very impressed with how easy it is to work with, how attractively it presents messages, how there’s sufficient archival space that I don’t have to keep cleaning out my mailbox, and how it’s so simple and clean compared to the ugly ad-heavy Yahoo Mail and Hotmail. Unfortunately, it’s also still an invitation-only system so getting an account is a bit of a “who you know”.
But, yes, there is a way to selectively forward messages from your Gmail account and there’s no cost associated with it (“nor”, Google assures us, “will there ever be.”).
The trick is to log in to your account, then click on the “Settings” link on the top right corner. There are lots of useful settings you can tweak here — don’t forget to turn on keyboard shortcuts, for example — but you want to click on “Filters” to accomplish what you’re trying to accomplish here.
Probably, you have no filters, so you’ll see a rather austere screen and a “Create a new filter” link. Click on it. Now you’ll see this:
To create a filter that selectively forwards messages that have, say, the pattern cikdiscuss in the subject, simply add those letters to the subject box, then click on “Next Step”.
Now you’re presented with five choices: archive the matching message directly (they call this “skip the inbox”), star it, apply the specified label, forward it to, and move it to the trash. Obviously, it’s the fourth choice that you want: check that option, enter the email address of your main mail account, click “Create Filter” and you’re done!
As you can see in the earlier screen shot, there are a number of different sophisticated filters you can create. I like that I can filter based on the content of the message, a real boon for using Gmail to help organize lots and lots of messages. MY kudos to the Google team for Gmail, and I just wish i could give everyone who reads AskDaveTaylor an account to check it out!