EML to PDF: Four Questions to Ask Before Converting .EML or .MSG E-Mail Files into PDF Documents

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E-Mail messages are being replaced by other forms of communication, including instant messaging through services such as Snapchat, Facebook and Google IM.  Despite the creep of communication alternatives into our lives, e-Mail is still used by 2.6 billion people.

For businesses and governments, it is frequently necessary to archive and convert e-mail into a format that be readily shared. More than 80% of all legal discovery involves e-mail. Converting e-mail into PDF documents is a favored way to share important e-mails for review and to introduce them as evidence into court proceedings.

Converting e-mail to PDF seems to be a simple matter at first glance.  People who have not been exposed to the process often don’t understand how complex it can actually be.  Here are five things to consider when converting .eml emails or Outlook .msg e-mails into PDF files.

1.  Why are you converting e-mails to PDF?

Before purchasing software or embarking on a project that will consume hours of your time, be sure that your work is going to serve the needs of the project.  For example, if you are converting e-mail for an archive librarian, you will need to familiarize yourself with ISO 19005-1, or PDF/A.  This format embeds fonts within the PDF so that the email can be faithfully reproduced later.  Failing to adhere to this standard will result in pdf files that not suited to long term preservation.

2. What about File Attachments?

While any PDF virtual printer will allow you to “print” an email message,  failing to process e-mail file attachments can result in the loss of extremely important information, and may result in the purchase of inadequate software.

Is it important that the files in the e-mail be editable?  If so, you will want to use software that embeds the file attachments within the PDF document.  Embedding files inside a .pdf allows the files to later be extracted from the pdf file.

On the other hand, if it is most important to preserve the email attachments and to not allow any changes, or if it is conceivable that the program that created the documents may not be accessible in the future to open the file, then converting the documents directly to the PDF image is preferable.

3. What about E-Mails within E-Mails?

Eml and Msg e-mail files may themselves contain Eml or Msg e-mail attachments. It is not uncommon to encounter emails within emails within emails, etc.    Consider whether your responsibility for processing e-mail file attachments to PDF includes the need to handle embedded e-mail files, and how you would like to see this situation managed by your e-mail conversion software.

4. What about Naming PDF Files?

Many software packages that can convert e-mails to PDF default to using the subject line as the file name, but are not able to provide a custom naming scheme to the PDF files they create.

Consider how the resulting PDF files should be named. For example, you may wish to include a court case number to the PDF file name. Or perhaps you simple want them to have a sequential number.   Or  maybe it would be best if you could combine different parts of the email, such as sender’s email + send date.

Accomplishing the task of naming e-mail files needs to be considered and planned before the project is started, or the final results may be unsuitable.

Converting Email to PDF

At Encryptomatic LLC, we have been helping our customer’s convert e-mail messages into PDF files for nearly a decade.  Our products include PstViewer Pro, an email to PDF converter for Windows desktop, and MessageExport, an e-mail convert that works within Microsoft Outlook.

Both products are well suited to the task of convert e-mail to PDF.  Both provide options for naming the PDF files in complex ways.  Either can convert most e-mail attachments directly into the PDF image, or they can embed the files with the PDF so they can be extracted later.  Both products support PDF/A e-mail archiving standard.

Visit Encryptomatic.com to learn more about this products and to download a 15 day free trial.We invite you to reach out to our support team with any questions. you may have.

 

How To Convert .EML Email Files Into .PDF Files?

Software screen image.

An .EML files is an individual email file. It contains the email message and any file attachments that were included with the message.  Eml files was once part of a larger file, such as a Mbox, Pst or Ost file, but has been saved outside of that larger storage file.

If you find yourself with a batch of .eml files that you need to convert into .PDF files, EML Viewer Pro software by Encryptomatic LLC can help you.

Why would someone ever have .eml files? There are many situations where you may encounter them.  As a published open standard (RFC-822) .eml files are used by many different email clients, including Windows Mail, Outlook Express, Thunderbird, and others.  If you are involved in a court case, or received a FOIA request fulfillment from a government agency, you may have received the emails in .eml format.

Converting .eml emails into common .pdf files sounds like it should be a very simple thing to do; and if you have the correct software, it is simple.

Many people encounter problems by attempting eml to pdf conversion using software that is not designed for that purpose.  For example, a free .pdf printer app might do a great job rendering the email message as a .pdf file, but may fail to convert file attachments.

Specialized functions, such as adding an email individually to an existing .pdf file, or embedding file attachments inside the pdf may not be supported. What if you need to convert thousands of .eml files to individual pdf files, and apply a specific naming structure to the files?  No free app that we’re aware of can support these complex operations.

EML Viewer Pro can!

Main screen of Eml Viewer Pro software, which can be used to convert .eml files into .pdf files.
Eml Viewer Software for MS Windows

Getting starting with .eml to .pdf file conversion

 

Download a free trial copy of Eml Viewer Pro software (also known as PstViewer Pro). The trial runs for 15 days. Although the registered version of the software can convert an unlimited number of emails to pdf in a single batch, while in trial mode it will only export up to 50 at a time.

When Eml Viewer Pro starts, use the folder navigation on the left side to select the folder where your .eml files reside.  Eml Viewer Pro will read in your .eml files and display them in a message list.

Image shows .eml files in an organized list in Eml Viewer Pro software for Windows.
.eml files in a list

To export a single .eml file to .pdf, follow these steps.

First, select the file(s) in the list that you want to convert to .pdf.
Next, from the Export drop down list, select the appropriate method for converting your .eml files from.

Finally, click the yellow “Export” button to start the operation.

A list of options for converting .eml files into .pdf files. Choose the correct option.
Select the eml to pdf export method

Eml Viewer Pro will go to work processing your eml files. You may be prompted to choose a destination folder.

Choosing the correct PDF export method.

As we mentioned earlier, any free pdf printer can suffice if you only wan to convert a single email into a single pdf file, especially if it does not contain file attachments.

EML Viewer Pro adds value by providing you with a wide of methods for converting .eml to .pdf.

Some of the possibilities include:

  • Exporting many email to a single pdf
  • Exporting many emails to multiple pdfs
  • Exporting an email into an existing pdf
  • Converting to pdf while extracting file attachments
  • Converting to pdf while embedding file attachments
  • Converting to pdf and attempting to convert file attachments into the pdf image
  • Applying a special name to the newly created .pdf files

Eml Viewer Pro accomplishes tasks through “Export Profiles.” These are sets of instructions that tells Eml Viewer Pro how it perform the task.  Export profiles appear from the drop down list. You can create brand new export profiles, or edit the ones that Eml Viewer Pro ships with.

Select the method for exporting eml emails into .pdf files.

 

Edit any export profile to customize

To edit an export profile, first select that profile from the list, and then click “Edit Profile.  This will open the profile editor. While we won’t go into great detail here, the profile editor allows you to customize many of the values and parameters to Eml Viewer Pro uses to accomplish its tasks.

The export profile editor, showing configurable settings for .eml-to-pdf export.
Edit the pdf export profile.

Download a free trial of EmlViewer Pro.

If you have any questions about exporting eml files into .pdf files, post them in the comments below, or email us at supportline at encryptomatic.com and we’ll be glad to help.