Python - SMTP

Neha Kumawat

a year ago

Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) is a protocol, which handles sending an e-mail and routing e-mail between mail servers.
Python provides smtplib module, which defines an SMTP client session object that can be used to send mails to any Internet machine with an SMTP or ESMTP listener daemon.
An SMTP object has an instance method called sendmail, which is typically used to do the work of mailing a message. It takes three parameters −
  • The sender − A string with the address of the sender.
The sender − A string with the address of the sender.
  • The receivers − A list of strings, one for each recipient.
The receivers − A list of strings, one for each recipient.
  • The message − A message as a string formatted as specified in the various RFCs.
The message − A message as a string formatted as specified in the various RFCs.

Example

Here is a simple way to send one e-mail using Python script. Try it once −

#!/usr/bin/python3

import smtplib

sender = 'from@fromdomain.com'
receivers = ['to@todomain.com']

message = """From: From Person 
To: To Person 
Subject: SMTP e-mail test

This is a test e-mail message.
"""

try:
   smtpObj = smtplib.SMTP('localhost')
   smtpObj.sendmail(sender, receivers, message)         
   print "Successfully sent email"
except SMTPException:
   print "Error: unable to send email"
Here, you have placed a basic e-mail in message, using a triple quote, taking care to format the headers correctly. An e-mail requires a From, To, and a Subject header, separated from the body of the e-mail with a blank line.
To send the mail you use smtpObj to connect to the SMTP server on the local machine. Then use the sendmail method along with the message, the from address, and the destination address as parameters (even though the from and to addresses are within the e-mail itself, these are not always used to route the mail).
If you are not running an SMTP server on your local machine, you can use smtplib client to communicate with a remote SMTP server. Unless you are using a webmail service (such as gmail or Yahoo! Mail), your e-mail provider must have provided you with the outgoing mail server details that you can supply them, as follows −

mail = smtplib.SMTP('smtp.gmail.com', 587)

Sending an HTML e-mail using Python

When you send a text message using Python, then all the content is treated as simple text. Even if you include HTML tags in a text message, it is displayed as simple text and HTML tags will not be formatted according to the HTML syntax. However, Python provides an option to send an HTML message as actual HTML message.
While sending an e-mail message, you can specify a Mime version, content type and the character set to send an HTML e-mail.

Example

Following is an example to send the HTML content as an e-mail. Try it once −

#!/usr/bin/python3

import smtplib

message = """From: From Person 
To: To Person 
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-type: text/html
Subject: SMTP HTML e-mail test

This is an e-mail message to be sent in HTML format

This is HTML message.This is headline.
"""

try:
   smtpObj = smtplib.SMTP('localhost')
   smtpObj.sendmail(sender, receivers, message)         
   print "Successfully sent email"
except SMTPException:
   print "Error: unable to send email"

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