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How to Print Part of an Email Message in Windows Mail or Outlook Express

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Printing an email is easy in Windows Mail and Outlook Express, but what if you want to print part of an email?

Unlike other email programs, Windows Mail and Outlook Express do not offer an intuitive, easy and comfortable way to do this. Sure, you can

  • highlight the part you want to print,
  • copy it,
  • create a new email in Windows Mail or Outlook Express,
  • paste the text and then
  • print the new message.

But this isn't all that easy, and your printout is missing all the original email's meta information — its sender, the time and date when it was delivered, and the original recipient.

Print Part of an Email Message in Windows Mail or Outlook Express

If you want to preserve all this information and still print only part of an email in Windows Mail or Outlook Express, you have to indulge in some more involved editing. But it's not that hard either:

  • Save the message as an .eml file to your Desktop and add "X-Unsent: 1".
  • Copy the complete email header (all lines beginning from the top until you reach the first empty line).
  • Paste them to a new text document in Notepad.
  • Double-click the .eml file on your Desktop to open it in Windows Mail or Outlook Express.
  • Delete the parts of the message you do not want to print.
  • Select File | Save As... from the menu.
  • Go to your Desktop.
  • Add " (edited)" to the suggested file name.
  • Make sure Mail (*.eml) is selected as the file type.
  • Click Save.
  • Open the newly created .eml file in Notepad.
  • Delete all header lines except the one starting with "Content-Type:", if present.
    • Email header lines can fold to the next line. In this case, the next line of text does not start in the first column. Since this often applies to "Content-Type:" lines, make sure you also leave in place all lines immediately following that do not begin in the first column.
  • Delete the header line starting with "Content-Type:" (if present) from the original email message's headers (in the other Notepad window).
  • Delete the "X-Unsent: 1" line.
  • Highlight and copy all header lines from the original message.
  • Paste them to the top of the new " (edited).eml" file (immediately preceding the "Content-Type:" line, if there is one.
  • Save the " (edited).eml" file.
  • Double-click it to open it in Windows Mail or Outlook Express.
  • Print the message.
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