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

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 desktkop, 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.

Appending .EML Emails To An Existing .PDF File

Encryptomatic LLC, the developers of email viewing software, has released update 4.7 for both EML Viewer Pro and EML Viewer Lite.  These releases include PDF Append, a new pdf management feature for people who regularly need to save .eml files or other email file types to a single pdf file.

The PDF Append capability helps you convert an individual .eml file into a new or existing pdf file. This is a useful feature if you want to create a single pdf file that contains multiple email messages. One of the use-cases for PDF Append involved a legal assistant who was given the responsibility to collect specific email communications into a single pdf file.  Prior to this ability being added to EML Viewer Pro, she would export the messages individually and then use different software to merge the pdf documents into a single file, a process she found cumbersome and time consuming.

With PDF Append, she can now export these email messages to a new or existing pdf file. As the emails are discovered, she can append them to a single pdf document, with no need to run another software package.

Toolbar includes function to append email to existing pdf file
PDF Append in EML Viewer Pro toolbar

Export .eml to pdf - toolbar image
PDF Append in EML Viewer Lite toolbar

To use this functionality, first start EML Viewer Pro or Lite and then select the folder containing your .eml files.  The software can also read .msg, .mht, .ost and Outlook .pst files.  Click on an email you want to export so it is highlighted in the mail list.  Now, click the +PDF button and enter a name for the file. The email message will be converted to PDF.

To add another email to the PDF file you just created, follow the same process, except select the pdf file you just created as the target.  The previous PDF file will be appended with your new email message.

EML Viewer Pro and Lite are very flexible email views. In addition to .eml files that are created by Outlook Express, Windows Mail and other email clients, they can also view and search Outlook .pst, .ost, and .msg files, and also .mht files. The PDF Append function works with all of the email formats supported by EML Viewer Pro and Lite.

For more information or to download a free trial of EML Viewer Pro, visit the product’s home page.