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Wiki | M | Mime


An internet protocol that facilitates extension of email's limited capabilities is termed as Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions (MIME). Users can insert images, text, data files, and sound for exchange through email. This addition of internet standard was proposed in the year 1991. MIME format is used to transmit all automated emails that are manually composed by using SMTP. The close relationship of MIME and SMTP standards is evident from the fact that on many occasions, emails are called as SMTP/MIME emails.

For the Internet, type of content has great significance in HTTP protocols. This content type is defined by MIME. In the beginning of any transmission through Web, servers insert MIME header that is used by clients for selection of application that is has relevance to the data indicated by header. Special header directives are used to describe the format of a message body. It is of importance for appropriate representation of email by client.

MIME can be extended to register new types of content and the presence of new version suggests that the message is formatted by using MIME. Internet media type of data is described by content-type and content-description offers additional information about message content. The encoding used in the message body is sown by content-transfer-encoding and content disposition has attribute 'filename' and used to define file's name as well as attachment setting. Media types were earlier referred to as MIME types and Media subtypes are assigned by IANA. These include applications, audio, images, messages, models, text, video and so forth.

The principal purpose of MIME is to code binary files for transmitting them over Web as attachments. It also facilitates sending a non-ASCI file including sound or a video. The basic intention behind development of MIME was to overcome limitations of SMTP such as inability to handle data that is not in text format, unable to support languages in 8-bit codes, and failure of rejecting mails exceeding a particular size.

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