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33.8 Labels

Each message can have various labels assigned to it as a means of classification. Each label has a name; different names are different labels. Any given label is either present or absent on a particular message. A few label names have standard meanings and are given to messages automatically by Rmail when appropriate; these special labels are called attributes. (See Rmail Attributes.) All other labels are assigned only by users.

a label RET

Assign the label label to the current message (rmail-add-label).

k label RET

Remove the label label from the current message (rmail-kill-label).

C-M-n labels RET

Move to the next message that has one of the labels labels (rmail-next-labeled-message).

C-M-p labels RET

Move to the previous message that has one of the labels labels (rmail-previous-labeled-message).

l labels RET
C-M-l labels RET

Make a summary of all messages containing any of the labels labels (rmail-summary-by-labels).

The a (rmail-add-label) and k (rmail-kill-label) commands allow you to assign or remove any label on the current message. If the label argument is empty, it means to assign or remove the label most recently assigned or removed.

Once you have given messages labels to classify them as you wish, there are three ways to use the labels: in moving, in summaries, and in sorting.

C-M-n labels RET (rmail-next-labeled-message) moves to the next message that has one of the labels labels. The argument labels specifies one or more label names, separated by commas. C-M-p (rmail-previous-labeled-message) is similar, but moves backwards to previous messages. A numeric argument to either command serves as a repeat count.

The command C-M-l labels RET (rmail-summary-by-labels) displays a summary containing only the messages that have at least one of a specified set of labels. The argument labels is one or more label names, separated by commas. See Rmail Summary, for information on summaries.

If the labels argument to C-M-n, C-M-p or C-M-l is empty, it means to use the last set of labels specified for any of these commands.

See Rmail Sorting, for information on sorting messages with labels.

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