Categories: Managing Settings and Mail :

How to delete old emails in bulk?

Showing 1-32 of 32 messages
How to delete old emails in bulk? rtolmach 1/1/10 7:29 AM
How do I delete lots of old emails?  The only way I can see is to go page-by-page to select all, then delete -- and then do the same thing again from the trash folder.  That would take me most of 2010 to do.

I saw the 'show search options' to specify old date ranges, but that leaves me in the same apparent position of having to delete page by page. 

I need an easy way to be able to delete all emails from, for instance, 1/1/2007 t0 6/30/2007.

Thanks for your guidance!





Please Also Include:
Operating system (e.g. WinXP): 
Program and version you use to access Gmail -- Firefox
Your antivirus software (e.g. Norton 2007):
Any extensions, toolbars or plug-ins:
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkennelly 1/1/10 4:18 PM
After you select All the conversations on one page, you are given a link to extend the selection to all the matching conversations.  
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? ehwest 1/12/10 7:44 AM
This doesn't help.   I apparantly need to delete 3 years worth of conversations in order to move the needle on my already-used capacity.   This is 20,000 pages of deletes.   Is the only way to do this to abandon my email ID and start over?
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkennelly 1/12/10 7:50 AM
Why does it not help?  Click to Select All, at the top of the list on any page.   Then a new link appears.  Click it to select all the pages, and you can delete them en masse.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? A KC 1/23/10 10:53 PM
there is no ALL to select so cannot delete all.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkc56 1/23/10 11:07 PM
Right above the first message should be:  Select: All, None, Read, Unread, Starred, Unstarred
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? chriswalkerwright 2/28/10 8:01 PM
i CLICK SELECT ALL BUT NO FURTHER LINK APPEARS.  i CLICK DELETE BUT ONLY 100 EMAILS ON ONE PAGE DISAPPEARS.  THIS COULD TAKE ME ALL NIGHT.  WHERE DOES THIS ADDITONAL LINK APPEAR?
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkennelly 2/28/10 8:06 PM
The extra link appears at the top of the conversation list.  
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkc56 2/28/10 8:36 PM
There's some confusion here.  I was talking about using All from the Inbox (or other label) to delete a page at a time.  I believe bkennelly is talking about selecting All as the result of doing a search (like "in:inbox") which can be expanded to all search results from just one page of results.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkennelly 2/28/10 9:17 PM
(The same additional link appears on both cases.)
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkc56 2/28/10 11:28 PM
(The same additional link appears on both cases.)

<slaps forehead>  I never noticed that.   :-)
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? Nitromerk 6/11/10 3:52 PM
You need to point out that you must be in Standard mode to utilize Select All
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? duncanindc 6/25/10 8:15 PM
This is somewhat helpful so far.  But what if I want to delete emails only beyond a certain date (say, anything before Nov. 1, 2009)?  How do I do that?  Thanks in advance.

Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkc56 6/25/10 8:18 PM
These links may help you figure out how to do that...

Advanced Search:  http://mail.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=7190
How to search:  http://email.about.com/od/gmailtips/qt/et_find_mail.htm

Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bleger814 7/12/10 2:15 PM
I've done everything by the book and the old emails keep reappearing like bad pennies! Help!!!
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? kdbeaty 7/13/10 1:19 PM
Using the search by date feature in the advanced search, I was able to search for emails within one year of a date I entered.
After the search was completed , I clicked on Select "All", then on the link that appeared at the top of the list of emails - "Select all ### conversations in the In Box" to select all these emails, 2 years worth.
Then, clicking on delete removes all these selected emails.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? Inana 10/10/10 6:09 AM
Perhaps some of us have a different version of Gmail because there is also NO All, none read starred unstarred etc at the top of my email. Nothing, zero zilch. I have scrutinized the entire screen.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkc56 10/10/10 9:03 AM
...there is also NO All, none read starred unstarred etc ...

That's the old format.  Now it's in the drop-down next to the select check-box (next to the Archive button).
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? wdurham 10/10/10 9:06 AM
OK guys - Let's take this step by step

You want to delete mails.

Input a search term - doesn't matter what it is - it could be two dates between which you want to delete. Could be emails from xx person. Could be emails which have attachments that are more than 2 or 3 years old. Search lets you find all of these things. Follow bkc56's links above to see what you need to do to select what you want to get rid of. Also you might have an obsolete label attached to some messages that you could usefully delete. If so click on it.

You then get a results window which has, at the far left of its toolbar, a button to select various kinds of mail. You can pull down the little arrow and choose what you want to select, but if all you want to do is select everything in the window, just click in the little check box. That will select everything in the current window. 

It will also offer you a link - right at the top of the message list - to select EVERYTHING that matches this search. 

Click it.

Click Delete. 

Gone to Trash

Click Trash

Click Empty Trash

Gone forever


Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bennierichardson 10/24/10 10:00 AM
Note:  if you delete by before:date method it will delete mails in your folders prior to that date also. WARNING
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bennierichardson 10/24/10 10:02 AM
Now I have to go through the trash and find a whole bunch of important stuff to put it back in my folders, there has to be a way to delete all before a certain date that leaves your folders intact.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkennelly 10/24/10 10:14 AM
bennierichardson,

You can exclude labels on the search expression to avoid matching the messages with those labels.

You might be able to recover the deleted messages for specific labels by searching for them with:

[ label:labelname in:trash ]  or [  label:(label1 OR label2...) in:trash ]

You can then recover them from the trash.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? A KC 12/7/10 10:43 PM
WHY can't you do what all other mail services do just have a SELECT ALL - DELETE

THIS IS STUPID
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkc56 12/7/10 10:44 PM
WHY can't you do what all other mail services do just have a SELECT ALL - DELETE

You can.  Use the check-box at the top to select-all.  If you want you can then expand that to be everything in the label rather than just what's visible.  Then hit Delete.

Easy.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? ssslithe 1/12/11 7:50 PM
I'm having a similar problem. I just noticed that I have thousands of messages in my sent folder on my Mac Mail, and of course on Gmail. Deleting them on Mail has moved them to the Deleted Messages folder on Gmail's web interface. BUT when I look in that folder, it seems to have moved the entire conversation. There are multiple labels but no way to tell which messages in the thread have which label.

If I select all the messages in Deleted Messages, move them to the bin and then empty it, as suggested above, will I lose the entire conversation or just the sent messages? I don't really want to try in case I lose the stuff in the inbox too.

Yet another reason why I can't stand Gmail's threaded messages. If anyone can help I'd be grateful!
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? ssslithe 1/12/11 7:54 PM
Ah - just tested it by deleting one message, not the whole folder, and yes, it removed the entire thread.

Is there a way to only delete the sent part of messages that are now in the Deleted Messages folder (not the bin yet)?
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkennelly 1/12/11 8:51 PM
You can work with individual messages by turning off conversation view.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? ssslithe 1/12/11 9:19 PM
I had no idea you could turn off the conversation view! Is that a recent feature? Thanks a lot for your help
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? bkennelly 1/12/11 9:26 PM
It was introduced a few months ago.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? jonharvey58 1/19/11 6:42 AM
I am still perplexed having read through this - still cannot see how I can delete all emails before a certain date...?

All the references to little arrows - no good - unless I can see a picture / screen dump

anyone?

Thanks
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? Pattik519 2/4/11 10:17 AM
I am not sure if this will help, but I just deleted over 800 messages at one time.  First, you must open up you gmail inbox.   I use igoogle and can see 5 emails at a time, if I double click on this it opens up my mail, BUT THIS IS NOT THE MAIN GMAIL INBOX.   This page only allows deleting "one page at a time"    You should see on the right hand side a link "Launch Full GMail".   Click this.

Once in the MAIN INBOX of your account, click select all, and a link will appear on the top line, centered above the first message and ask you do you want to delete just the 50 messages or all 850 or 2000 messages deleted?  You can then choose what you want to do.   Hope this helps, very frustrating to go page by page.
Re: How to delete old emails in bulk? Mat9 3/11/11 7:49 PM
I was finding the solution as well but it seemed all the answers can't help me out, though giving me some ideas. Fortunately and finally I've already known the solution to my problem. This may help someone facing the same problem or you might try.  Please check first that you must be in Standard view (changing view at the bottom of the screen).
 
1. Please click Settings (at the right top corner of your mailbox page) to go to Setting page.
 
2. Find "Conversation View" label, change  Conversation view ON to Conversation view OFF.
 
3. Click Inbox to back to your inbox screen. You can see how the system organizes your mail is changed.
 
4. Click "Show Search Options" and set the criteria as you like it for deleting a mail bulk.
 
5. Select All to delete all emails in the current page. Then you can see the sentence "Select all messages that match this search" appearing just above the first email in the screen.
 
And that's it!  Click that sentence link. The sentence now changes to "All conversations in this search are selected". You can click "Delete" now to delete all emails that matches your search criteria!
 
Hope this helps!
 
Mat from Thailand
 
 
 
More topics »