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I've noticed that extensions just make my gmail more frustrating. For me, out of the box functionality is great if you know how to use it all. A combination of labels (parent and sub labels), color coding of labels, advanced filtering, and the "has the words:" field is all I need. I get almost 200 emails a day and only 4 or 5 ever hit my inbox. The rest are searchable, organized, and easy to find.
Knowing how to use what Gmail provides on its own, e.g., filters and labels, plus maybe a couple of the Gmail labs seems to be more than enough to handle my email.
All I want is a 1-click unread shortcut that doesn't require a lab. The iPad app has it, but the web and Android versions don't. What gives +Gmail?
+Joshua Talley  (1) At the bottom of the left column, click on the elipsis (...) which says "Gadgets" when you mouseover it.  This should reveal the Quick Links section at the bottom of the left column.  (2) Now enter "label:unread" in the search field at the top of the Gmail screen and hit enter.  (3) Click on the "Add Quick Link" link in the Quick Links section and enter some descriptive text, e.g., Unread, in the pop-up box that appears.  (4)  You will now have a one click unread shortcut in that Quick Links section of the left column.
+Joshua Talley When I first opened my Gmail account, back when it was in beta and you had to be invited, I had an Unread system label.  I'm sure I didn't create it, it was just there along with other system labels like Spam and Trash.  I noticed later though that newer accounts I opened didn't have the Unread label.  Then finally, at some point, my Unread label ceased to appear under System labels and was just in my regular labels section.  And it doesn't work as well either as I have to refresh it after clicking on it for it to reveal the current unread emails.  I don't know why Gmail got rid of the Unread system label.  It certainly seems like an intuitively useful feature.
I just skimmed but nice recommendations. Gmail filters have saved A LOT of headache. Very few spam emails make it thru. And those that make it thru, get added to the filters already in place. 

I'll def look further into these recommendations.
+Joshua Talley . If you go to your gmail setting and click inbox, you can split up your inbox into sections. Mine is just 2 sections. [Unread] and [Everything else]. When I view my inbox, all my Unread Messages are at the top of my list. Then there's a page break, and the list of all my other emails are below the break.
I use Priority Inbox, with one section as "Unread." However, that doesn't ignore filters like label:unread does. Maybe your suggestion is as close as I'm going to get on the web. However, it isn't much different than the "Quick Links" (and I don't have to revert my inbox after I use that).
+Joshua Talley . I guess i'm not really getting what you're asking for. Priority inbox isn't the same thing as inbox sections. It's under the [Inbox] tab in Settings. Also, I have a million labels and filters. Some of those filters have the mail skip my inbox and some of them don't Also, you always have your [All Mail] label so you can see everything (read & unread). Something else is that all your labels have a number next to them of how many unread emails there are in that label. 
YesWare works very well for tracking email and integrating into CRM. Boston-based, they do a very nice job, and have been rapidly innovating. Paying customer here - but I believe you get 100 credits a month, which is a great trial run.
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