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How Can I Do a “Power Search” In Mail (for Mojave)?

I want to search Mail for multiple words. I thought it might have the same capability as Finder for adding multiple levels of search criteria. I’m an old PC dog, so maybe I’m missing an obvious Mac method… ;)

Comments: 2 Responses to “How Can I Do a “Power Search” In Mail (for Mojave)?”

    2 years ago

    The important thing to remember whenever you are talking about email is that email is usually a server-based service. Unless you are using old-fashioned POP email, then your email exists on the server. Mail is just an app to access it. It is similar to how Safari is not the Web. Safari is a Web viewer. Mail is not your email. Mail is an email viewer.

    So if you are using iCloud, Gmail or Yahoo or email, then when you try to do things with email, it is mostly done on the server. Your capabilities will depend on the service you use, not Mail.

    In reality, it is kind of a partnership. The Mail app works with your email service. I’m not sure, for instance, exactly what happens when you search using Yahoo email in Mail. I’d guess that Mail quickly looks in what email it has cached locally (recent messages) and then also sends a request to Yahoo’s servers. How Yahoo’s servers respond is up to Yahoo. I don’t have a high regard for Yahoo’s email service, and I’m not sure how it processes search requests.

    I can say that using iCloud and Gmail, it seems that each word is looked for independently. So, for instance, if I search for Alpha and Beta, I get results for “Alpha Beta” together and also results for the words when they are in different parts of the email. And I get results that have one and not the other.

    I use Gmail for my primary email address, and when I really want to dig in and search my 20 years of email messages for something in particular, I usually go to the web interface for Gmail, since that is the native way to use Gmail. There are tons of “Power Search” techniques at that level that are in the Gmail help pages and also talked about elsewhere. I find the deep searches, looking for messages from years past, will also go quicker here.

    2 years ago

    Thanks, Gary! I didn’t realize how it all interacted.

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