Filter Outgoing Mail with OS X Mail and Mail Act-On

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With the help of the Mail Act-On add-on, you can filter outgoing messages in OS X Mail.

Rules to Automate It All

If you have Mac OS X Mail sort your incoming mail automatically, applying colors and filing it to folders, why not filter outgoing mail, too?

Because Mail can't do that? That's right… Mail does not know how to filter sent mail on its own. With a little help from the Mail Act-On add-on, Mac OS X Mail can save all your outgoing mail to your universal "Archive" folder, for example, file to correspondent or project mailboxes, delete certain messages, set colors, or even run AppleScript actions — all according to your rules and criteria.

Filter Outgoing Mail in Mac OS X Mail (with Mail Act-On)

To have Mac OS X Mail filter messages you send automatically:

  1. Make sure Mail Act-On is installed.
  2. Select Mail | Preferences... from the menu.
  3. Go to the Rules category.
  4. Now open the Outbox Rules tab.
  5. Click Add Rule.
    1. If you have already set up an incoming rule with the same or similar criteria (or actions), note that you can copy it: go to Inbox Rules, highlight the desired rule and click To Outbox. Make sure you edit the rule, though—likely, you'll have to exchange "Any Recipient" for "From," for example.
  6. Select the desired criteria for spotting the right messages for filtering under If ___ of the following conditions are met:
    1. Make the criterion read "If any of the following conditions are met: Any Recipient Contains," for example, to filter all messages you send to (but not necessarily only to)
  7. Pick the desired actions to be applied automatically under Perform the following actions:
    1. Make the actions read "Move Message to mailbox: Archive," for example, to file the sent message automatically not in the Sent folder but in "Archive."
  8. Click OK.

(Tested with Mail Act-On 2 and 3)