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Find Big Mail lets you quickly free space on your Gmail account


My free Google Apps Gmail account has about 7.5GB of storage space, total. That's extremely generous on Google's part, but that amount of space does eventually fill up – especially if you have people sending you huge PowerPoint presentations, videos of their baby's first steps, or hilarious kitten photos in full resolution (because they have no idea what "resolution" means, much less how to reduce it).

What I find perplexing is that Google never included an option to sort or filter messages by size. I have no doubt that this is a business decision, because implementing such a feature would be trivial for the Gmail team. To speak bluntly, I think Google wouldn't mind it so much if I ran out of free space on my Google Apps account; then I'd have to get some more space, and this time it would cost money.

If I actually needed more space, or even if Google was simply upfront about its reluctance to provide such an option, I'd be fine with this. As things stand now, I feel that Google is being uncharacteristically stingy.

This is where Find Big Mail comes into play. While Google does not provide a way to filter by size, it does provide IMAP access. Find Big Mail accesses your Gmail account via IMAP, and it catalogs all of your messages by size. It creates three labels – one for messages larger than 2MB, one for messages larger than 500KB, and the last is for messages larger than 100KB.

Once it completed scanning my account, I simply clicked the label that said FindBigMail > 2mb, selected all messages, and clicked Delete. I then went to the trash folder and emptied that. Voilà – I dropped from 64 percent occupied space to 36 percent. How awesome is that?

Find Big Mail's free option scans only a third of your total mailbox, but it was enough for me. For $5 it will scan your whole Gmail account. You don't have to provide it with your password – only authorize it via Google's own access control. Once it's done, you can revoke its access from your Google account page. I highly recommend it!

Tags: email, find big mail, FindBigMail, free space, FreeSpace, gmail, imap, zukerlist