Python Send Email Through Gmail – Watch Now This tutorial has an associated video course created by the Real Python team. Watch with written tutorial to deepen your understanding: Emailing with Python
You probably found this tutorial because you want to send email with Python. Maybe you want to get email reminders from your code, send users a confirmation email when they create an account, or send emails to remind members of your organization to pay their dues. Sending emails manually is a time-consuming and error-prone task, but it’s easy to automate with Python.
Python Send Email Through Gmail
At the end of this tutorial, you will find a variety of transactional email services that will come in handy when you want to send a large number of emails.
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It uses the RFC 821 protocol for SMTP. The examples in this tutorial will use Gmail’s SMTP server to send email, but the same principles apply to other email services. Although most email providers use the same ports as in this tutorial, you can do a quick Google search to verify yours.
To get started with this tutorial, create a development Gmail account or set up a debug SMTP server that rejects emails you send and prints them to the command line instead. Both options are arranged for you below. A local SMTP debug server can be useful to fix problems with the e-mail functionality and to ensure that your e-mail functions are error-free before sending an e-mail.
If you decide to use a Gmail account to send your emails, I highly recommend creating a one-time account for your code development. This is because you will need to set up the security settings of your Gmail account to allow access from your Python code, and there is a possibility that you may accidentally reveal your login credentials. I also found that my test account inbox was quickly filling up with test emails; that was reason enough to create a new development Gmail account.
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. You can use this to spoof multiple addresses, all pointing to the same inbox, when testing email functionality.
If you don’t want to lower the security settings of your Gmail account, refer to Google’s documentation on how to obtain credentials to access your Python script using the OAuth2 authorization framework.
Module that comes preloaded with Python. Instead of sending e-mails to the specified address, it rejects and prints their contents to the console. Running a local debug server means you don’t have to worry about encrypting messages or using email server login credentials.
All emails sent through this server will be rejected and displayed as a byte object per line in the terminal window:
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For the rest of the tutorial, I’ll assume you’re using a Gmail account, but if you’re using a local server for debugging, be sure to use it.
Select it as your SMTP server and use port 1025 instead of port 465 or 587.
Before you start sending emails with HTML content and attachments, you will learn how to send plain text emails using Python. These are emails you can write in a plain text editor. No fancy things like text formatting or hyperlinks. You will learn this a little later.
When sending emails via Python, you must ensure that your SMTP connection is encrypted so that your messages and login credentials cannot be easily accessed by others. SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) and TLS (Transport Layer Security) are two protocols that can be used to encrypt an SMTP connection. You don’t need to use any of these when using a local debug server.
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Either way, Gmail will encrypt emails using TLS as it is the more secure successor to SSL. Due to Python security considerations, it is highly recommended to use it.
From the ssl module. This will install the system’s trusted CA certificates, enable hostname checking and certificate validation, and attempt to select reasonably secure protocol and password settings.
Smtplib is Python’s built-in module for sending email to any Internet machine with an SMTP or ESMTP listener daemon.
First, it initiates a connection that is secure from the start and a little more concise than it is.
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Validates hostname and certificates and optimizes connection security. Don’t forget to enter your own email address instead.
Storing your email password in your code is not a safe practice, especially if you intend to share it with others. Instead, use
To allow the user to enter their password while running the script, as in the example above. If you do not want your password to appear on the screen while typing, you can import and use the getpass module.
To create a secure connection from the beginning, we can create an insecure SMTP connection and encrypt it like this:
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Encapsulates an SMTP connection and gives you access to its methods. I recommend defining your SMTP server and port at the beginning of your script for easy configuration.
That we used in the previous example. To make sure your code doesn’t crash when something goes wrong, put your main code in a script.
If needed, you don’t need to use it unless you want to check the server’s SMTP service extensions.
After you initiate a secure SMTP connection using one of the above methods, you can send it using your email.
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I recommend defining the email addresses and message content at the top of your script after import so you can easily change them:
Is displayed as the subject of the email, and the text after the newlines is considered the body of the message.
For comparison, here is a code example that sends a plain text email over a secure SMTP connection with:
Etc) or if you want to add images, hyperlinks or customizable content, HTML is very useful. The most common email type today is MIME (Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions), which is a multi-part email combining HTML and plain text. MIME messages are handled by Python
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Adding a plain text alternative for HTML messages is important, as not all email clients display HTML content by default, and some people choose to only receive plain text emails for security reasons. Be sure to include the HTML message after the plain text version, as the email client will create the most recently created attachment first.
In this example, you first define the plain text and HTML message as string literals and then store them like this:
Message and sent via your secure email server connection. Make sure to include the HTML message after the plain text alternative, as email clients will try to render the last subsection first.
To send binaries to an e-mail server designed to process text data, they must be encoded before transmission. This is most commonly done using base64, which encodes binary data into printable ASCII characters.
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The message accepts parameters in the form of RFC5233-style key-values that are stored in a dictionary and passed to the .add_header method of the message base class.
Imagine that you want to send emails to the members of your organization to remind them to pay their dues. Or you might want to send personalized emails to students in your class with grades for their last assignment. These tasks are easy in Python.
An easy starting point for sending multiple personalized emails is to create a CSV (comma-separated values) file with all the necessary personal information. (Make sure you don’t share personal information with others without their consent.) A CSV file can often be thought of as a simple table where the first row contains column headings.
I saved it in the same folder as my Python code. It contains the names, addresses and ranks of a number of fictional people. i used
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Configures it to have all emails go to my own inbox, which in this example is [email protected]:
When creating a CSV file, remember to separate your values with commas without spaces.
The code example below shows you how to open a CSV file and navigate through the content lines (skipping the header line). I printed it out to make sure the code is working correctly before emailing all your contacts
If the values in your CSV file have spaces on one or both sides, you can remove them using
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You can put custom content in a message using str.format() to fill the containers in braces. For example,
As of Python 3.6, string formatting can be done more elegantly using f-strings, but it requires containers to be defined before the f-string. Legacy to define the email message at the beginning of the script and fill the containers for each contact while looping through the CSV file
With that in mind, you can create a generic message body with containers.
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