Lesson 4: Filtering for overview

In the previous lessons, we looked at why links and indentation matter to retrieve information. But as your Roam database grows, you might want to see less information so you’re left with what’s relevant. That’s where filters come in.

Roam filters can be found on pages and linked references, recognizable by the filter symbol (Roam filter option). On the Daily Notes page you won’t see the filter option; for that you have to be on a specific day’s page. Click on a day’s date from the Daily Notes to go to that day’s page.

When you click the filter button on a page, you see the following pop-up. The shown values are any links (using brackets, tags, or attributes) that are are on the page or in the linked references:

Roam simple filter options

Pages with many links have a search box in the filter options, so you can easily find specific values:

Roam filter options with search

By clicking a filter value, you include it, meaning that only the block with the value you selected will show on the page. When you Shift-Click a filter value, you exclude it from the page, meaning that any block that contains that value is hidden.

How you set filters on a page is saved; whenever you return to the page, the filter is still applied. You can recognize an active filter by it’s color; it turns from grey to red: Roam filter active (red)

By default, filters are only applied to the page or linked references where you selected them. But, you can apply a filter to your entire database by clicking the globe symbol (Roam global filter symbol) in the top-right corner of a value. The globe symbol appears as you hover with your mouse over the top-right corner of a value:

Roam global filter

Whenever you apply a global filter, you can undo it from any filter option. Simply click the globe symbol again to undo its application to the database (graph).

Additional resources

Need some more pointers to wrap your head around filtering in Roam? Check out one of these videos from fellow Roam users:

Filters: Fundamentals of Roam Research


Roam global filter feature

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