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3/12/12
Original Poster
Google user

Save email in single file .msg format

Dear Google Support,
 
We're probably not alone in needing to easily save emails in a single file format, rather than the cumbersome complete html format. .Msg is the preferred format because most of the world's corporate offices access their files in this format. We were going to migrate our users onto the chrome only system, however the absence of this is an insurmountable barrier. When can we expect such an enhancement?
 
Thanks
Gary
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All Replies (8)
wdurham
3/12/12
wdurham
If you use exclusively webmail, then individual messages can be saved as .eml files. 

Use Show Original from the dropdown menu next to the Reply button, and save the resulting page with the file extension .eml. The resulting file is openable in the majority of email clients.

I don't know of anyway to save from a browser in the proprietary Microsoft Office Outlook .msg format, though there are numerous .eml-to-.msg converters available. 
3/13/12
Original Poster
Google user
Hi Wdurham,
 
Thanks for the quick and helpful reply. It's a good start. However, outlook refuses to open .eml files and when opened in word the critical mail header information is lost. Even the mail contents are a bit scrambled. Is there a better way?
wdurham
3/13/12
wdurham
There's no other way I know of to save an email out of the GMail web interface.  You can of course save the "Show Original" page as a text file, rather than as an .eml file, but this can be very confusing and clumsy where formatting has been used. 

Outlook probably can't open .eml files - it's stuck in its own proprietary.msg bubble - but the majority of other email clients open them without difficulty. 

I am wondering why you need to save emails as Outlook readable files?  If all you want to do is keep some messages for posterity, or to send as attachments to others, there are alternatives to email message format.  For example if you enable the Create a Document Lab (Settings/Labs) you can create a Google Document from the main text of the email, which can be then downloaded in a range of document formats. However, this doesn't preserve From/To headings, so may be useless for your purpose. 

Personally, I've found the very best solution is to install a PDF printer into Windows, which means you can print the email to a PDF file. This replicates the email just as if you printed it on paper, and DOES preserve the key To & From info and the date and time stamps. 

 
bkennelly
3/13/12
bkennelly
Have you tried name the files with the .msg extension, rather than .eml
3/15/12
Original Poster
Google user
Hi bkennelly,
 
Thanks for the help as well. Outlook won't open the .msg extension. In any case as mentioned, saving into any format from Open Original would not capture the attachments.
 
The best solution now is to save in complete html, however that format is cumbersome since it comes with an extra folder. Actually if we can save in .mht already that would be a big improvement. Would like to hear from the Google chrome folks on any chance of that happening soon at least?
 
Best would still be an in-built function within gmail to save the email into an email client compatible format.
 
Cheers
Gary
bkennelly
3/15/12
bkennelly
On Thursday, March 15, 2012 12:28:33 AM UTC-7, Gary@VHR wrote:
Hi bkennelly,

Thanks for the help as well. Outlook won't open the .msg extension. In any case as mentioned, saving into any format from Open Original would not capture the attachments.


Saving the message from "Show original" does include the attachments, in the standard emai format. Most email programs, including Outlook, can open the messages. Have you tried dropping the saved file onto Outlook to open it, so you can save it from there? 

(Of course, you can just connect Outlook to Gmail and save the messages from there.)
3/19/12
Original Poster
Google user
Hi bkennelly,
 
Do I need to enable anything on the browser or outlook to open the .eml and to capture the attachments with Show Original?
 
Strangely, when I save original neither does it capture attachments nor can it be open from Outlook no matter how I try. I even used the Microsoft hot fix, which causes it to be opened as an email with the .eml as an attachment. When I open the .eml attachment in the email, it opens another .eml as an attachment, putting me into an infinite outlook loop. Quite absurd actually.
 
Have tried it on a few computers in the office both on xp and win 7. Both on Chrome and Firefox. It just doesn't work.
 
It's true that we could connect outlook to Gmail. However, if that is the case we might as well fully migrate back to Outlook rather than forcing users to toggle between 2 platforms. We are trying to fully utilize our new enterprise feature set with Google Apps but these basic feature problems are a few remaining obstacles.
 
Thanks for the help.
 
Warmest regards,
Gary
bkennelly
3/19/12
bkennelly
If you are not wanting to use Outlook, why are you trying to save the messages in Outlook's proprietary format? 

The "Show original" format in Gmail is the raw, rfc822 formatted messages as they are sent over the internet, with the attachments encoded in the body of the message. It is recognised and understood by every email program, so if you save it as plain text, you should be able to open it in any email program. (The most common file extension is ".eml".) There are also many programs that can be used to extract the attachments from that file and save them unencoded. 

It may be easier for your needs to convert the messages to documents, but that will not include the attachments. 
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