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How Do I View A Temporary Email Attachment?

Author:  EmailOnDeck
EmailOnDeck photo

Tutorial level:  SEMI-ADVANCED

Yes, you can view attachments at EmailOnDeck, however, it takes a bit of work and patience.

This guide will walk you step-by-step on how to view any attachments sent to your temporary email address.

Step 1
View Raw Email

View your email and then scroll down and look on the bottom right corner for a link that says: "view raw email". When you click on that it should open up a new page that shows the raw email sent.

View raw email link

Step 2
Determine The Attachment Type

Scroll down to the part that looks similar to the below picture. That's the attachment and it's usually at the bottom of the raw email.

View raw temporary email attachment text

Note in the picture above that the Content-Type tells us it's a PDF attachment. This could be also be JPG for pictures or DOC for Microsoft Word documents.

Make a note of what the Content-Type is.

Also, the Content-Transfer-Encoding is base64. base64 is a pretty standard encoding for attachments in emails, but you may see something else.

Make a note of what the Content-Transfer-Encoding is.

Step 3
Highlight The Large Block Of Text

In our example above, we'll start highlighting the text at the JVBERi0xL and then highlight all the way down to the end of lJUVPRgo=

Highlight raw temporary email attachment text

Copy this text to your clipboard.

Step 4
Decode the Text

Open up Notepad++ or your text editor of choice.

Paste all the text into the editor. We are now going to decode this base64 content.

Select all of the text (ctrl-A), go to "Plugins" > "MIME Tools" > "Base64 Decode".

Decode base64 temporary email attachment text


Decoded based64 temporary email attachment text

* NOTE: If your Content-Transfer-Encoding was something different from base64, simply select all the text and decode it appropriately. If your editor doesn't support it, try searching online for a free text decoder that supports the Content-Transfer-Encoding of your attachment.

Step 5
Save The File

First, recall what the Content-Type of your attachment was. In our case, it was a PDF file.

When you save with Notepad++, you will want to save the "File name" with the appropriate extension. For PDF it's .pdf, for a picture it may be .jpg or .png

For the "Save as type" leave it as: "Normal text file (*.txt)".

Save temporary email attachment

Step 6
Open Your Attachment

You will now see your attachment on your desktop (or wherever you saved it to). Double click on the icon and you can view your attachment!

Temporary email attachment icon
View temporary email attachment


If you have successfully gone through all these steps, you now have more insight on how attachments work in emails than 99% of the population. You are the 1% ;)

Stay safe out there!

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