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Someone send me a .msg file skype, and somehow I just can't open this in Ubuntu

Is there a app in which I can open this file?

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This could be many things...what type is this file? There are several different programs using the msg extension. – Bobby Jan 22 '10 at 13:11

This is an MS-Outlook format. There is a command line tool called MSGConvert (see which converts .msg files into .eml. You can open those with Thunderbird or Evolution. On Ubuntu you should be able to install the tool using

sudo apt-get install libemail-outlook-message-perl libemail-sender-perl

from a command line. Use

msgconvert *.msg

to convert every file in a directory at once. MSGConvert will produce copies of your .msg-files with the suffix .msg.eml. Regardless, your friend should learn how to send content properly.

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Somehow msgconvert didn't appear in the path, but the following worked: perl -we 'use Email::Outlook::Message; print Email::Outlook::Message->new(shift)->to_email_mime->as_string' foo.msg >bar.eml – Dallaylaen Jan 28 at 17:54
Just to note, on debian based systems the msgconvert script isn't in the package. You can get it from the repo however here: – PottyBert Mar 3 at 13:58
Using the msgconvert tool from, the command line ./msgconvert file.msg produces nothing. You have to use ./msgconvert --outfile file.eml file.msg. – slowhand May 27 at 15:53

Try running this command in a terminal to identify the type of file:

$ file foo.msg

The output should tell you what type of file it is. If it's a text file of some kind, you can open it in gedit or your favorite text editor.

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obviously, replace "foo.msg" with the name of your .msg file. – quack quixote Jan 22 '10 at 13:46
It gives Composite Document File V2 Document, No summary info and is an Outlook file for emails. See also How do I view an Outlook .msg file? – Martin Thoma Jun 5 '13 at 4:46

I ran across such a file as well (provided to me by a colleague who saved an email message in Microsoft Outlook). file(1) identifies the .msg file like so:

foo.msg: Composite Document File V2 Document

Georg Jung's answer regarding Matijs van Zuijlen's perl-based msgconvert(1) utility steered me in the right direction. Although my system does not at the time of this writing have the msgconvert utility packaged, the install instructions on Matijs' web page indicate using cpan as one way to install it:

cpan -i Email::Outlook::Message

The cpan URL is

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Try this link :

I came to this post searching for an answer, found the above link which did the job for me. Hence wanted to share here.

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Just curious, why all the downvotes? Seems like a perfectly good tool. – VirtualDXS May 9 at 3:10
@VirtualDXS - Life is harsh, isn't it ? :) – bragboy May 10 at 20:28
I also downvote this "solution", because it violates privacy. .msg files sometimes contain mail threads, which must be kept confidential. – slowhand May 27 at 15:29

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