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Title: Id  
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Subject: Email, News server, Language complexity
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


Message-ID is a unique identifier for a digital message, most commonly a globally unique identifier used in email and Usenet newsgroups.[1]

Message-IDs are required to have a specific format which is a subset of an email address[2] (though Microsoft Outlook is known to generate invalid IDs with three parts[3]) and to be globally unique. That is, no two different messages must ever have the same Message-ID. A common technique used by many message systems is to use a time and date stamp along with the local host's domain name, e.g.,[4]

Message-IDs, if present, are generated by the client program sending the email. [5]

A large number of mails to public mailinglists can be found via their Message-ID by using a link of the form

See also

  • RFC 822 (superseded by 2822)
  • RFC 2111 Content-ID and Message-ID Uniform Resource Locators
  • RFC 2822 (superseded by 5322)
  • RFC 5322 Internet Message Format
  • Recommendations for generating Message IDs


  1. ^ Eoghan Casey (2004). Digital evidence and computer crime: forensic science, computers and the Internet.  
  2. ^ RFC5322 - Internet Message Format
  3. ^ SpamAssassin Bug 5666 - New Outlook Message-ID format causes FORGED_MUA_OUTLOOK FP
  4. ^ RFC2392 - Content-ID and Message-ID Uniform Resource Locators
  5. ^ RFC5322 - Internet Message Format
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