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A public-domain Unix utility that composes and decomposes a MIME message on the Internet. Mail programs use metamail to decode non-text messages they cannot handle themselves. See MIME.


(Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions) The most common method for transmitting non-text files via Internet email, which was originally designed for only ASCII text. Defined by IETF RFC 2822, MIME encodes the files using one of two encoding methods and decodes it back to its original format at the receiving end. A MIME header is added to the file which includes the type of data contained and the encoding method used. The MIME "type" (renamed "Internet media type") has become the de facto standard for describing files on the Internet (see Internet media type).

Secure MIME (S/MIME)
S/MIME is a version of MIME that adds RSA encryption for secure email transmission. It is available in many email programs, including versions of Outlook and Gmail. S/MIME is defined by IETF RFCs 3850-3852 and 2634. See base64, quoted printable encoding, UUcoding, BinHex and Wincode.

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