I try to put at least one tag on each e-mail that comes in, but sometimes I miss some.

Is there any way to search for all untagged e-mails in Gmail (or all e-mails with just the Inbox tag)?

Right now the only way to find Gmail e-mails with no tags (or with only the Inbox tag) is to scroll through my list of all e-mail and look for myself...terrible.

I would like a way to get a list of all e-mails with no tags (or with only the Inbox tag). I have tried a search term with "-[Tag1] -[Tag2] -[Tag3] [...]" with "-" in front of all of the tags I use, but that does not work. If it or something like it did work, even being while long and awkward, I would still use it since it would be better than what I currently have to do!

Edit: I originally typed this out referring to "tags", the non-Gmail-centric word for "labels". Right before submitting I remembered the Gmail-centric term and changed those words to "labels" before submitting the question. I have now put the question back to the original way I wrote it so that people searching using search term "tags" (like I did, which is why I did not find How can I filter my Gmail messages that aren't labeled?) will find an answer.

  • Before I posted this question, I did a search of webapps.SE. I did not find the original one (webapps.stackexchange.com/questions/275/…) because the go-to term for me is "tags", not "labels". My search terms were "GMail", "search", and "tags" (not "labels"), and future users might search for "tags" as well.
    – A.M.
    Commented Jul 15, 2013 at 15:51
  • Actually, the only reason my question contains the word "labels" at all is that when I was adding question tags (after writing out the question), I could not find a gmail-tags tag, but found a 'gmail-labels` tag instead, and after that reminder of the GMail-centric term I changed most of my "tag" references to "label". Now that I see the other question, though, I will edit my question back so that future users can more easily find an answer (whether they search for "tags" or "labels".
    – A.M.
    Commented Jul 15, 2013 at 15:54
  • One more point: The earlier question is tagged with "filter" and not "search", which is another reason I did not find it. I searched for existing questions using "search" and not "filter", because I consider filtering to be automatic sorting/tagging/junking etc. of e-mail, not searching for e-mail using the search bar.
    – A.M.
    Commented Jul 15, 2013 at 16:08
  • Please do post answers, as per this, straight from Jeff Atwood: "What we want is on the order of 4 or 5 similar-but-not-quite-the-same duplicates to cover all possible search terms and common permutations of the question. It is also OK for these duplicates to have their own answers so people who find them don’t have to click yet again to get to a good answer." (from blog.stackoverflow.com/2010/11/…)
    – A.M.
    Commented Jul 15, 2013 at 16:19

1 Answer 1


On Gmail, Search option is given with different criteria for mails. Either you can search from all available mails whether or not it is labeled or you can specify different criteria.

  • Can you clarify? Can you please give a sample search string?
    – A.M.
    Commented Jul 15, 2013 at 16:22
  • support.google.com/mail/answer/6593?hl=en
    – Darshi
    Commented Jul 17, 2013 at 5:49
  • I was asking for a search string, meaning the actual text that you would type into the GMail search box. All you have said so far is that you can search e-mails based on labels (and other criteria), and based on my question it is clear that I already know that. The links could have helped, so thanks for trying, but I had already read both of those pages. Also, on StackExchange sites you should explain the important parts of whatever you link to rather than just posting the link.
    – A.M.
    Commented Jul 17, 2013 at 12:58

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.