How to Save, Export, and Back Up Gmail Filters

Mailboxes in post office
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Never change a working filter, they say, and take it with you wherever you go.

If your email life takes you from one Gmail account to another, you can take your filters, laboriously entered over the years to archive, label, and star automatically, with you. You can also share working filters with colleagues and friends, of course, or just keep a copy around as a backup.

Save, Export and Backup Gmail Filters

To create an offline copy of your Gmail filters, easily imported and fit as a backup or to move the filters to another Gmail account:

  • Click the Settings gear icon () in Gmail.
  • Select Settings from the menu.
  • Go to the Filters and Blocked Addresses tab.
  • Check all the rules you want to save.
    • To check all your rules, click All under Select: at the bottom of the list.
  • Click Export.

You can rename the resulting "mailFilters.xml" file, of course, keeping the ".xml" extension intact. If you export individual rules or groups for use in other accounts, giving them names that reflect their criteria or actions can be helpful in particular.