Archiving emails as EML v. PDF

What are the advantages/disadvantages of saving emails in EML form v. PDF? I recently learned you can just drag an email from Apple Mail or Outlook into finder and it will save it in EML format. Very simple. Saving to PDF is more complicated, but not necessarily so with the right software.

If I need something long-term or for sharing, for something like taxes, I’ll always go PDF. I suspect it and .txt will be around until the end of time.

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Isn’t the EML format also just ASCII text?

I think it’s easier to convert EML into PDF than PDF into EML, so I would probably store them as EML.

PDF’s are much better for the human reader though…

(I store mails in MBOX format myself)

My years in the corporate (and the refer outlook) world have led me to use EML (or MSG as outlook on Windows does for drag and drop). This is largely because it’s really simple.

Since my EagleFiler app treats EML files as first class citizens, I’ve given in to the simplicity of capturing important emails as EML. Printing to PDF may be needed in some situations but was often disappointing, giving me a file that didn’t mirror the email.

I archive email accounts to DEVONthink 3, which stores the messages in native format, from which PDFs can be made for selected messages. Best of all worlds.

Years ago I used a now-defunct app “Email Archiver Pro” that converted everything to PDFs. The results were spotty. I no longer trust any software to do a decent job batch converting .eml to .pdf. That’s why I archive .eml and convert when I need a PDF, otherwise not.

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I generally store in eml when I can. If you ever want to reply to a stored message, eml files can be replied to like a regular email message in some email clients (not the new Outlook, though). They are text files, with header info and font info.