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MIME Encapsulation of Aggregate HTML Documents (mhtml)
(concluded WG)

Note: The data for concluded WGs is occasionally incorrect.
Name: MIME Encapsulation of Aggregate HTML Documents
Area:Applications Area (app)
State: Concluded
Charter: charter-ietf-mhtml-01 (Approved)
Chair: Einar Stefferud <>
Mailing List

Charter for 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.

From May to October, 1997, the working group will Monitor
Implementation progress and discuss issues, periodically Update Draft
of Informational Document.

The editors of this group are:

Main editor: Jacob Palme <>
Associate editor: Alex Hopmann <>


Mar 1996
Clarify issues and submit first Internet-Draft.
Jun 1996
Submit first Internet-Draft for MIME encapsulation of HTML.
Sep 1996
Submit MHTML specification to IESG for consideration as a Proposed Standard.
Oct 1996
Submit Internet-Draft for guidelines in created documents for disconnected access.
Dec 1996
Submit guidelines Internet-Draft to IESG for consideration as an Informational RFC.
Aug 1997
Meet at Munich to review Implementation progress.
Oct 1997
Submit Implementation Progress Internet-Draft to IESG for publication as an Informational RFC.