20

I've got a Gmail email filter rule set up to prevent email from various senders from going into spam.  Here's a simplified version of the rule:

Matches:
from:(abc.org.nz|def.nz|westpac|mailman|ird.govt|mybank|contact)
Do this: Never send it to Spam

As you can see, to keep it short and more generalised (not too generalised so far), I have not listed entire email addresses.

So far the above rule seems to be working for everything listed except "mybank", which still allows emails from "office@mybanksavings.co.nz" to go into spam.

Is this because the filter doesn't match on partial "words" (alphanumeric strings?), or what?

I had a quick look here, but it didn't seem to go into sufficient detail:
  https://support.google.com/mail/answer/6579?hl=en
So if you know of a link to support whatever you say, that could also help.

8
  • You could try using wildcards. *@mybank*
    – DrZoo
    Oct 1 '15 at 0:52
  • I've just tested that kind of thing and it seems to be not working, DrZoo, but thanks for trying. Well, it "works" if, for example, "mybank" appears as a separate word in the display name (e.g. MyBank Savings <info@mybanksavings.co.nz>), but in that scenario, so does "@mybank*", "*mybank*", "mybank*" and just "mybank". So, it looks as if the "*" wildcard is being ignored in those cases.
    – Terry
    Oct 1 '15 at 3:41
  • You could make a separate filter for the bank thing.
    – DrZoo
    Oct 1 '15 at 3:45
  • 1
    So I guess the only point in starting with "@" is to prevent matching other domain prefixes (e.g. test@amybanksavings.co.nz, note the leading "a"). It also looks as if emails from info@mybanksavings.co.nz will be matched by these filters: "mybanksavings" & "mybanksavings.co", but not "mybanksavings.c" or "mybanksavings.c*”, so again it seems to be about complete "words" (i.e. alphanumeric strings up to an an "@" or "." or the end of the string).
    – Terry
    Oct 1 '15 at 3:52
  • 1
    to match domains but not any higher domains AFTER... ie: match @domain.com but NOT @domain.com.au... try actually enclosing in quotes, eg: from:"@domain.com" - since it parses on WHOLE WORDS, and you've specifically said you only want the characters in quotes, it shouldn't include the other results. It might also help to possibly add -from:"@domain.com." (note the trailing dot) - but not likely, as it usually ignores special chars. Jul 10 at 13:49
19

Gmail search doesn't support wildcards, partial words, or regular expressions. By extension, then, neither do Gmail filters. (Some information from Google Support.)

@example.com will work because @ is a word separator. But @example will match @example.com but not @examplexyz.

Some related questions here:

7
  • 1
    Well said, AI E. That seems to go along with the comments I made above, and it's good to have those links. Your Google Support link helped me to find Advanced Operators (support.google.com/mail/answer/7190), which is a page I have seen before, but I'm surprised they don't mention the "|" (alternative to the "OR") operator. I assume Google have tried to keep their search facility as simple as possible, because not all users are programmers, and as a result, there are limits to what can be searched for / filtered on.
    – Terry
    Oct 1 '15 at 21:40
  • Very often Google Support lags changes made to the apps, sometimes by several months.
    – ale
    Oct 1 '15 at 21:41
  • Are you talking about the lack of documentation for the "|" operator?
    – Terry
    Oct 2 '15 at 0:56
  • No, just in general that sometimes there's features that aren't fully documented.
    – ale
    Oct 2 '15 at 1:18
  • 1
    @Blairg23 — Where is this documented, please? I have been trying to get regex to work in Gmail, with no success whatsoever. Unless Google has removed the functionality since you posted :( Aug 17 '20 at 18:52
1

According to this article from Zapier, you can use syntax as shown below (more examples in the article):

enter image description here

3
  • nope, it does not work. and the source document does not mention about regular expression. brackets here are only used for grouping, e.g. -(contact@zapier.com OR support@zapier.com) Oct 28 '19 at 10:48
  • the question is about partial word, your syntax works for filtering (and I provided the example), but it does not answer the question. As I experimented, the syntax does not work for partial matching. Oct 29 '19 at 15:32
  • Ah, I misread that to mean "partial sentences" or "sentences with only some of the words"
    – Blairg23
    Oct 29 '19 at 17:23

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