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Console viewer for MIME mail files

Project Description

Mailcat outputs mail files to the text console. It works just like cat:

$ mailcat example.eml
Subject: Plushy
From:    Jan <jan@catnip.nowhere>
To:      Marta <>
Date:    Fri, 21 Aug 2015 23:10:43 +0200

Hi Marta,

Here are the pictures of my cat, Plushy. She's so cute!!!

[1] Plushy1.jpg (image/jpeg)
[2] Plushy2.jpg (image/jpeg)
[3] Plushy3.jpg (image/jpeg)

Download and install

Install Mailcat with pip:

pip install mailcat

To use Mailcat with less, add this to ~/.lessfilter:


case "$1" in
        mailcat --color=always "$1"
        exit 0

exit 1

and make ~/.lessfilter executable:

chmod +x ~/.lessfilter

The source code is available from the Git repository at Bitbucket.

Mailcat is written in Python and licensed under GNU GPL version 3 or any later version.

Version history


(released on October 3, 2015)

  • Added support for mbox files.
  • Added support for reading from stdin.
  • Fixed UnicodeEncodeError in Python 2 when stdout is a file or a pipe.


(released on August 21, 2015)

  • Added support for reading .eml files (plain text MIME messages).
  • Added formatting of HTML bodies as plain text or raw HTML.
  • Added attachment listing.
  • Added color highlighting.

Release History

This version
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Filename, Size & Hash SHA256 Hash Help File Type Python Version Upload Date
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Source None Oct 3, 2015

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