Charter for IETF working group: MIME Encapsulation of Aggregate HTML Documents (mhtml)

MIME Encapsulation of Aggregate HTML Documents (mhtml)


Last revision of this charter: 5 May 1997

Current status: inactive working group

Einar Stefferud <>

Applications Area Director(s):
Keith Moore <>
Harald Alvestrand <>

Area Advisor
Harald Alvestrand <>

Mailing lists:
To Subscribe:
In Body: subscribe mhtml <full name>
Home page:

Description of Working Group:

World Wide Web documents are most often written using Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML). HTML is notable in that it contains "embedded content"; that is, HTML documents often contain pointers or links to other objects (images, external references) which are to be presented to the recipient. Currently, these compound structured Web documents are transported almost exclusively via the interactive HTTP protocol. The MHTML working group has developed three Proposed Standards (RFCs 2110, 2111 and 2112) which permit the transport of such compound structured Web documents via Internet mail in MIME multipart/related body parts.

The Proposed Standards are intended to support interoperability between separate HTTP-based systems and Internet mail systems, as well as being suitable for combined mail/HTTP browser systems.

It is beyond the scope of this working group to come up with standards for document formats other than HTML Web documents. However, the Proposed Standards so far produced by the working group have been designed to allow other such formats to use similar strategies.

The MHTML WG is currently INACTIVE while first implementations are under way. To support implementation efforts, the WG Editor maintains an Informational Internet-Draft which provides additional useful information for implementors. This Informational Draft also discusses Web page formatting choices that affect their efficient use through disconnected channels such as mail. It will become an Informational RFC after implementation experience has been collected. Until then, this informational draft will be kept current and available in the IETF Internet-Drafts library.

The MHTML Mailing List remains open for discussion of any issues that may arise during implementation, and to collect information about successful interoperable and interworkable implementations in anticipation of progression to Draft-Standard Status.

Goals and Milestones

May-Oct 1997:
Monitor Implementation progress and discuss issues. Periodically Update Draft of Informational Document.
Aug 1997:
Meet at Munich to review Implementation progress and informational document.
Oct 1997:
Publish Informational Document as an RFC.

Published Proposed Standards:

(Links to the latest versions of these documents will be available from URL: - remember to reload/refresh this page when you access it to get the latest version and not an old cached version)

RFC 2110
J. Palme, A. Hopman, "MIME E-mail Encapsulation of Aggregate Documents, such as HTML (MHTML)", 03/12/1997. (Pages=19) (Format=.txt), URL:
RFC 2111
E. Levinson, "Content-ID and Message-ID Uniform Resource Locators", 03/12/1997. (Pages=5) (Format=.txt), URL:
RFC 2112
E. Levinson, "The MIME Multipart/Related Content-type", 03/12/1997. (Pages=9) (Format=.txt) (Obsoletes RFC1872), URL:


Sending HTML in E-mail, an informational supplement to RFC ???: MIME E-mail Encapsulation of Aggregate HTML Documents (MHTML), version 06: by Jacob Palme. URL: