Posted by : Deepak Vasudevan Friday, October 13, 2006

Recovering Email Attachments from WinMail.Dat

Microsoft Outlook is by far the best and most rich email client on the planet. But there are other email clients also. The problem actually comes when you send an email with attachments to your friends and people and if the message is comprehendible by the email client used by them and if you have sent the email using Microsoft Outlook, they end up getting a simple attachment like winmail.dat.

What happens behind the scenes?

When you receive a message from a user with Microsoft Outlook who has sent you a message in Microsoft Outlook RTF format, you will receive the normal message text along with an attached file named 'winmail.dat'. Strictly speaking it's not a Word rich text file and you can't use Word to read it. The winmail.dat file contains a formatted version of the message (which this program ignores) and any attached files.

But there is some light at the end of tunnel. After searching a while, I came across a small tool called WMDecode, which recovers the email attachments from WinMail.dat and saves them for you individually. Check out WMDecode from this URL. However, the catch is that the software is released as a time-limited download and each time it expires it has to be redownloaded. However there is a non-expiring version which is also available on the website for $10.

One Response so far.

  1. I have found few more tools that help recovery of content from WinMail.dat. They are:

    1) Free WinMail Opener.
    2) Online WinMail Decoder

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