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Easy to use module to send e-mails with Node.JS

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Nodemailer is an easy to use module to send e-mails with Node.JS (using SMTP or sendmail or Amazon SES) and is unicode friendly - You can use any characters you like ✔

Nodemailer is Windows friendly, you can install it with npm on Windows just like any other module, there are no compiled dependencies. Use it from Azure or from your Windows box hassle free.

Version v0.3 of Nodemailer is built from scratch and might break some existing scripts, so beware while upgrading. Nodemailer should be backwards compatible - if your script worked before, then it should work now, even if Nodemailer documentation differs from your code (method names, properties etc.).

Use DocumentUp to read this README in a more structured way (with TOC).

Build Status

Nodemailer supports

  • Unicode to use any characters
  • HTML content as well as plain text alternative
  • Attachments (including attachment streaming for sending larger files)
  • Embedded images in HTML
  • SSL/STARTTLS for secure e-mail delivery
  • Different transport methods - SMTP, sendmail and Amazon SES
  • SMTP Connection pool and connection reuse for rapid delivery
  • Preconfigured services for using SMTP with Gmail, Hotmail etc.
  • Use objects as header values for SendGrid SMTP API

Check out my other mail related modules

If you want to parse generated or received e-mail instead of sending it, check out MailParser.

If you only want to generate the raw e-mail stream, check out MailComposer.

If you only want to communicate with the SMTP (both as client and the server), check out simplesmtp.


This is a complete example to send an e-mail with plaintext and HTML body

var nodemailer = require("nodemailer");

// create reusable transport method (opens pool of SMTP connections)
var smtpTransport = nodemailer.createTransport("SMTP",{
    service: "Gmail",
    auth: {
        user: "",
        pass: "userpass"

// setup e-mail data with unicode symbols
var mailOptions = {
    from: "Sender Name ✔ <>", // sender address
    to: ",", // list of receivers
    subject: "Hello ✔", // Subject line
    text: "Hello world ✔", // plaintext body
    html: "<b>Hello world ✔</b>" // html body

// send mail with defined transport object
smtpTransport.sendMail(mailOptions, function(error, response){
        console.log("Message sent: " + response.message);
    smtpTransport.close(); // shut down the connection pool, no more messages

See also the examples folder for full featured examples


Install through NPM

npm install nodemailer


Include the module

var nodemailer = require("nodemailer");

An e-mail can be sent with sendMail(mailOptions[, callback]) command

transport.sendMail(mailOptions, callback);


  • transport is a transport method defined with nodemailer.createTransport
  • mailOptions defines the e-mail (set its subject, body text, receivers etc.), see E-mail Message Fields for details
  • callback is the callback function that will be run after the e-mail is sent or the sending failed (see Return callback for details)

Setting up a transport method

Before you can send any e-mails you need to set up a transport method. This can be done with nodemailer.createTransport(type, options) where type indicates the transport protocol and options defines how it is used.

var transport = nodemailer.createTransport("SMTP", {smtp_options});

The same transport object can and should be reused several times.

When the transport method is defined, it can be used to send e-mail with sendMail

var transport = nodemailer.createTransport("SMTP", {smtp_options});

    from: "",
    to: ""

Possible transport methods

Required type parameter can be one of the following:

  • SMTP for using SMTP
  • SES for using Amazon SES
  • Sendmail for utilizing systems sendmail command

Setting up SMTP

SMTP is different from the other transport mechanisms, as in its case a connection pool is created. All the connections try to stay alive as long as possible and are reusable to minimize the protocol overhead delay - for example setting up TLS for authenticating is relatively lengthy process (in CPU terms, not by human terms), you do not want to do it several times.

Possible SMTP options are the following:

  • service - an optional well known service identifier ("Gmail", "Hotmail" etc., see Well known Services for a list of supported services) to auto-configure host, port and secure connection settings
  • host - hostname of the SMTP server (defaults to "localhost", not needed with service)
  • port - port of the SMTP server (defaults to 25, not needed with service)
  • secureConnection - use SSL (default is false, not needed with service). If you're using port 587 then keep secureConnection false, since the connection is started in insecure plain text mode and only later upgraded with STARTTLS
  • name - the name of the client server (defaults to machine name)
  • auth - authentication object as {user:"...", pass:"..."} or {XOAuthToken: "base64data"}
  • ignoreTLS - ignore server support for STARTTLS (defaults to false)
  • debug - output client and server messages to console
  • maxConnections - how many connections to keep in the pool (defaults to 5)


var transport = nodemailer.createTransport("SMTP", {
    service: "Gmail",
    auth: {
        user: "",
        pass: "userpass"

or the same without service parameter

var transport = nodemailer.createTransport("SMTP", {
    host: "", // hostname
    secureConnection: true, // use SSL
    port: 465, // port for secure SMTP
    auth: {
        user: "",
        pass: "userpass"

NB! if you want to close the pool (cancel all open connections) you can use transport.close()

var transport = nodemailer.createTransport("SMTP",{});
transport.close(); // close the pool 

SMTP XOAUTH and token generation

nodemailer supports XOAUTH authentication for SMTP. To use this, include XOAuthToken option in auth instead of the regular user and pass.

var mailOptions = {
    auth: {
        XOAuthToken: "R0VUIGh0dHBzOi8vbWFpbC5nb29...."

nodemailer includes also built in XOAUTH token generator which can be used with nodemailer.createXOAuthGenerator(). The function is preconfigured for Gmail, so in this case only mandatory options are user, token and tokenSecret.

var XOAuthTokenGenerator = nodemailer.createXOAuthGenerator({
        user: "",
        // requestUrl: "https://oauth.access.point",
        // consumerKey: "anonymous",
        // consumerSecret: "anonymous",
        token: "1/O_HgoO4h2uOUfpus0V--7mygICXrQQ0ZajB3ZH52KqM",
        tokenSecret: "_mUBkIwNPnfQBUIWrJrpXJ0c"

One of user or requestUrl is mandatory. consumerKey and consumerSecret both default to "anonymous".

var mailOptions = {
    auth: {
        XOAuthToken: nodemailer.createXOAuthGenerator({
            user: "",
            token: "1/O_HgoO4h2uOUfpus0V--7mygICXrQQ0ZajB3ZH52KqM",
            tokenSecret: "_mUBkIwNPnfQBUIWrJrpXJ0c"

Setting up SES

SES is actually a HTTP based protocol, the compiled e-mail and related info (signatures and such) are sent as a HTTP request to SES servers.

Possible SES options are the following:


var transport = nodemailer.createTransport("SES", {
    AWSSecretKey: "AWS/Secret/key"

Setting up Sendmail

Sendmail transport method streams the compiled message to the stdin of sendmail command.

Configuration is really easy, the options parameter is optional but you can use it to define the path to the sendmail command

var transport = nodemailer.createTransport("Sendmail", "/usr/bin/sendmail");

Well known services for SMTP

If you want to use a well known service as the SMTP host, you do not need to enter the hostname or port number, just use the service parameter (NB! case sensitive).

Currently cupported services are:

  • "Gmail" for Google Mail
  • "" for
  • "Hotmail" for Microsoft Live Hotmail
  • "iCloud" for Apple iCloud
  • "" for
  • "Postmark" for Postmark App
  • "SendGrid" for SendGrid
  • "SES" for Amazon SES
  • "Yahoo" for Yahoo Mail
  • "Zoho" for Zoho Mail

Predefined service data covers host, port and secure connection settings, any other parameters (ie. auth) need to be set separately.

E-mail message fields

The following are the possible fields of an e-mail message:

  • from - The e-mail address of the sender. All e-mail addresses can be plain or formatted Sender Name <>
  • to - Comma separated list of recipients e-mail addresses that will appear on the To: field
  • cc - Comma separated list of recipients e-mail addresses that will appear on the Cc: field
  • bcc - Comma separated list of recipients e-mail addresses that will appear on the Bcc: field
  • replyTo - An e-mail address that will appear on the Reply-To: field
  • subject - The subject of the e-mail
  • text - The plaintext version of the message
  • html - The HTML version of the message
  • generateTextFromHTML - if set to true uses HTML to generate plain text body part from the HTML if the text is not defined
  • headers - An object of additional header fields {"X-Key-Name": "key value"} (NB! values as passed as is, you should do your own encoding to 7bit if needed)
  • attachments - An array of attachment objects.
  • envelope - optional SMTP envelope, if auto generated envelope is not suitable

All text fields (e-mail addresses, plaintext body, html body) use UTF-8 as the encoding. Attachments are streamed as binary.


var transport = nodemailer.createTransport("Sendmail");

var mailOptions = {
    from: "",
    to: "",
    subject: "Hello world!",
    text: "Plaintext body"


SendGrid support

Nodemailer supports SendGrid SMTP API out of the box - you can use objects as header values and these are automatically JSONized (and mime encoded if needed).

var mailOptions = {
    headers: {
        'X-SMTPAPI': {
            category : "newuser",
                "%name%": ["Žiguli Õllepruul"]
    subject: "Hello, %name%"

This also applies to any other service that expects a JSON string as a header value for specified key.

Generate Text from HTML

If generateTextFromHTML option is set to true, then HTML contents of the mail is automatically converted to plaintext format when plaintext content is empty or missing.

For example

mailOptions = {
    generateTextFromHTML: true,
    html: '<h1>Hello world</h1><p><b>How</b> are you?',
    // text: '' // no text part

is automatically converted in the backround by Nodemailer to:

mailOptions = {
    // source html:
    html: '<h1>Hello world</h1><p><b>How</b> are you?',
    // automatically generated plaintext message:
    text: "Hello world\n"+
          "**How** are you?"

As you can see the output syntax for generateTextFromHTML looks similar to markdown, and that is exactly the case here - Nodemailer includes a simple HTML to markdown converter. But don't expect too much from it, it's not full featured or perfect, just some regexes here and there.

Attachment fields

Attahcment object consists of the following properties:

  • fileName - filename to be reported as the name of the attached file, use of unicode is allowed (except when using Amazon SES which doesn't like it)
  • cid - optional content id for using inline images in HTML message source
  • contents - String or a Buffer contents for the attachment
  • filePath - path to a file if you want to stream the file instead of including it (better for larger attachments)
  • streamSource - Stream object for arbitrary binary streams if you want to stream the contents (needs to support pause/resume)
  • contentType - optional content type for the attachment, if not set will be derived from the fileName property

One of contents, filePath or streamSource must be specified, if none is present, the attachment will be discarded. Other fields are optional.

Attachments can be added as many as you want.

var mailOptions = {
    attachments: [
            fileName: "text1.txt",
            contents: "hello world!
            fileName: "text2.txt",
            contents: new Buffer("hello world!,"utf-8")
            fileName: "text3.txt",
            filePath: "/path/to/file.txt" // stream this file
            fileName: "text4.txt",
            streamSource: fs.createReadStream("file.txt")
            fileName: "text",
            contents: "hello world!,
            contentType: "text/plain"

Address Formatting

All the e-mail addresses can be plain e-mail address

or with formatted name (includes unicode support)

"Ноде Майлер" <>

To, Cc and Bcc fields accept comma separated list of e-mails. Formatting can be mixed., "Ноде Майлер" <>, "Name, User" <>

You can even use unicode domain and user names, these are automatically converted to the supported form

"Uncode Domain" <info@müriaad-polü>

SMTP envelope

SMTP envelope is usually auto generated from from, to, cc and bcc fields but if for some reason you want to specify it yourself, you can do it with envelope property.

envelope is an object with the following params: from, to, cc and bcc just like with regular mail options. You can also use the regular address format.

mailOptions = {
    from: "",
    to: "",
    envelope: {
        from: "Daemon <>",
        to: ", Mailer <>"

Using Embedded Images

Attachments can be used as embedded images in the HTML body. To use this feature, you need to set additional property of the attachment - cid (unique identifier of the file) which is a reference to the attachment file. The same cid value must be used as the image URL in HTML (using cid: as the URL protocol, see example below).

NB! the cid value should be as unique as possible!

var mailOptions = {
    html: "Embedded image: <img src='' />",
    attachments: [{
        filename: "image.png",
        filePath: "/path/to/file",
        cid: "" //same cid value as in the html img src

Return callback

Return callback gets two parameters

  • error - an error object if the message failed
  • responseStatus - an object with some information about the status on success


nodemailer.sendMail(mailOptions, function(error, responseStatus){
        console.log(responseStatus.message); // response from the server


Run the tests with npm in Nodemailer's directory

npm test

There aren't currently many tests for Nodemailer but there are a lot of tests in the modules that are used to generate the raw e-mail body and to use the SMTP client connection.


Nodemailer in itself is actually more like a wrapper for my other modules mailcomposer for composing the raw message stream and simplesmtp for delivering it, by providing an unified API. If there's some problems with particular parts of the message composing/sending process you should look at the appropriate module.


Nodemailer is licensed under MIT license. Basically you can do whatever you want to with it.

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