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In this series on productivity, author Jess Stratton takes you through the latest tools that will help you run your business and life more efficiently. Each installment covers a particular feature or technique in a different online tool, such as Google Apps, Skype, YouTube, Mint.com, Etsy, and more. Check back every Monday for tips on topics from recording and publishing video chats to managing your finances online.
My name is Jess Stratton and welcome to Monday Productivity Pointers. In the last video, I showed you how to use the service Attachments.me to organize file and quickly access your Gmail attachments. But in this video, I'm going to show you a quick tip to easily find your largest attachments in your email program regardless of what program that is. Attachments.me, as great as it is, it currently only supports Gmail. So if you use another service or client like outlook.com or the native desktop Mac Mail, you'll need to find your attachments manually.
I've got outlook.com, a Web mail service, open right now. Now the key item to know here is that large attachments take up a lot of space in your email. So if you're always hitting your quota and running out of room, you can save and store your largest attachments elsewhere so that you'll have plenty more room for regular emails. The key is, how do you find those large attachments. And it's fine if you have small attachments here and there, like the odd photo. But how do you know that you don't have one single, huge attachment taking up valuable storage space.
So, I'm going to start with a web mail service, and then I'll show you on a desktop mail client what to look for. So let's start with outlook.com. It defaults to showing me my inbox. In most email programs, it's going to default to showing you your newest emails first. Because you want to see them in descending order. So it's always going to be sorted by date. However, you have the ability to change that. So what you're looking for is any ability to change the sort order of these emails and change it to sort by size.
Now, a good place to look is near the date field. So over here on the right I can see that my emails are sorted by date. But I'm going to click on this arrange-by, and instead of sorting by date, I have all these choices here but in this case I'm going to choose Size. So this now takes my inbox, and regardless of the date and when it came in, its going to sort everything by size. So right now, my smallest email, taking up the least amount of room is at the top, and the biggest email taking up the most room is at the bottom.
I can also tell by this paper clip icon that these emails contain an attachment. So as you can see by the size, this one's a whopping 12 megs of space. It doesn't take much for an attachment to quickly inflate your inbox size. So you can see here which ones are taking up the most room. So I could open up this email, detach these photos and save them to my computer, and then delete the email. And I've now freed up all that space on my web mail service. When I'm done, I can always come back up here to arrange by and change it back to Date.
So that's how you do it, and that's what you need to look for if you're on a web mail service, like Gmail or outlook.com, or Yahoo Mail. But what about a desktop client like Mac Mail or Windows Live Mail? I'm going to open up my Mac Mail client. And I'm in the inbox. And just like before, it's sorted by date. So the most recent ones are at the top and it goes down. So I want to find my attachment sizes. So I've got these emails and it's not really helping me.
I know I've got some large attachments. I have no idea where they are. So I'm going to change the sort order. Here's where you can see that they're currently sorted by date. I'm going to click that Pull-down menu, and there's two options here. Now you may see this in your email program. I have the ability to change the sort order by attachments or size. Now these are different. If given the choice, always choose size. Because if you choose attachments, it's going to change the sort order by how many attachments are in a particular email.
For example, if I change to attachments, and I scroll all the way up here, I have two emails. One email is at the top and it's an eight megabyte, so it's large. And there's some photos in here. So I can scroll down and I can see that there's a lot of photos. But yet, underneath that, here's an email that's 19 megabytes. If I click on that one, there's significantly less photos in here. But they're bigger so they take up more space.
So that's why you always want to change the sort order by size rather than attachment. Because just because having a lot of attachments in an email does not necessarily mean that they're large attachments. So I'm going to change by size, and now it rightfully flips that 19 megabyte one right at the very top. So that's a very quick way to always to look out for what email size attachments you have. And always keep your email program lean and mean no matter whether you're using it on a desktop version or on the web.
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