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Joined: 17 July 2012
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Posted: 17 April 2020 at 12:10pm | IP Logged Quote mnoreen

Hello - My question is related to the Attachment IsInline property.

I have code that loops through the attachment collection of an email message and saves, then removes, attachments that are NOT inline based on that property.

I have found a lot of "mixed" results, however. For example, I have an email loaded from an .eml file. When I open that .eml file in Outlook, the image files are displayed as external attachments (not rendered in the body). Yet, when I iterate over that same .eml file w/ Mailbee code, it shows each attachment as inline. Also, if I try to display that .eml file with the message GetHtmlWithBase64EncodedRelatedFiles() method, it does NOT display the inline attachments. So there seems to be a mix up there of sorts.

Is there anything else that can be done to determine that these attachments are really "external" vs "internal"?
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Posted: 17 April 2020 at 12:50pm | IP Logged Quote Alex


Attachment can be inline regardless of whether it's present in HTML body or not. A message can even have no HTML body at all. "Inline" just means this attachment must be rendered. Should it be rendered within the body or side-by-side, that's another question. If the attachment has Content-ID, this usually means this Content-ID is referenced somewhere in HTML body. GetHtmlWithBase64EncodedRelatedFiles only processes inline attachments which are referenced in the body. As for other inline attachments (without Content-ID), you can display them, like, below the main HTML of the message.

So, you can assume that there are 3 categories:
- real attachments (not rendered in any way)
- inline attachments which are not referenced in the body (usually they don't have Content-ID)
- inline attachments referenced in the body (by their Content-ID)

Sometimes the border between these categories is blurry, but this is the nature of email - it's not a strict standard like XML. For instance, inline attachment can be referenced by its filename and have Content-ID header missing. But this shouldn't be a big issue - in this case you'll just display it twice - as part of the message body and separately, below the message body. Not perfect but still no big deal.

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