There is a new feature in Mail in Mountain Lion called VIP mailboxes. It is a way of displaying only those messages that are important to you and it helps to cut out the mountain of distracting mail that fills our inboxes each day. Selecting a VIP mailbox shows only those emails from that sender. You can get most of the features of Mountain Lion's VIP mailboxes in Mail in Lion.
A VIP mailbox is basically just a Smart Mailbox and this feature has been around for a long time. To create one, start Mail and then click Mailbox, New Smart Mailbox. Enter the name of the sender in Smart Mailbox Name. Below you can create a rule for the display of messages in this mailbox. In the first box select From, in the second select Contains, and in the third enter the name of the sender. That's it and it's very similar to a VIP mailbox.
Cick OK and you will see the new Smart Mailbox in the left panel. Click it to view all the emails from that sender, just as with VIPs in Mountain Lion.
You can actually do more with a Smart Mailbox. Select it and select Mailbox, Edit Smart Mailbox. Suppose you wanted to show messages from several people. You could create multiple Smart mailboxes or you could simply add those recipients to the list. Where it says Contains messages that match, select any. Now click the plus symbol at the right side and a new rule is added. Select From in the first box, Contains in the second and enter the sender's name in the third.
You can create Smart Mailboxes for your friends, relatives, work colleagues or other senders that you consider important. One click and you can see all the emails from them without all the usual clutter. Mountain Lion's VIP mailbox does a little more than this, but not much.
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