Sending emails with Javascript

This is a little confusing to explain, so bear with me here...

I want to set up a system where a user can send templated emails via my website, except it's not actually sent using my server - it instead just opens up their own local mail client with an email ready to go. The application would fill out the body of the email with predefined variables, to save the user having to type it themselves. They can then edit the message as desired, should it not exactly suit their purposes.

There's a number of reasons I want it to go via the user's local mail client, so getting the server to send the email is not an option: it has to be 100% client-side.

I already have a mostly-working solution running, and I'll post the details of that as an answer, I'm wondering if there's any better way?



The way I'm doing it now is basically like this:


<textarea id="myText">
    Lorem ipsum...
<button onclick="sendMail(); return false">Send</button>

The Javascript:

function sendMail() {
    var link = "mailto:[email protected]"
             + "[email protected]"
             + "&subject=" + escape("This is my subject")
             + "&body=" + escape(document.getElementById('myText').value)

    window.location.href = link;

This, surprisingly, works rather well. The only problem is that if the body is particularly long (somewhere over 2000 characters), then it just opens a new email but there's no information in it. I suspect that it'd be to do with the maximum length of the URL being exceeded.


Here's the way doing it using jQuery and an "element" to click on :

    $(location).attr('href', 'mailto:?subject='
                             + encodeURIComponent("This is my subject")
                             + "&body=" 
                             + encodeURIComponent("This is my body")

Then, you can get your contents either by feeding it from input fields (ie. using $('#input1').val() or by a server side script with $.get('...'). Have fun


You don't need any javascript, you just need your href to be coded like this:

<a href="mailto:[email protected]">email me here!</a>

What about having a live validation on the textbox, and once it goes over 2000 (or whatever the maximum threshold is) then display 'This email is too long to be completed in the browser, please <span class="launchEmailClientLink">launch what you have in your email client</span>'

To which I'd have

.launchEmailClientLink {
cursor: pointer;
color: #00F;

and jQuery this into your onDomReady


You can use this free service:

  1. Include the script:

<script src=""></script>

  1. Send an email using:
  "[email protected]",
  "[email protected]",
  "This is a subject",
  "this is the body",

If this is just going to open up the user's client to send the email, why not let them compose it there as well. You lose the ability to track what they are sending, but if that's not important, then just collect the addresses and subject and pop up the client to let the user fill in the body.


The problem with the very idea is that the user has to have an email client, which is not the case if he rely on webmails, which is the case for many users. (at least there was no turn-around to redirect to this webmail when I investigated the issue a dozen years ago).

That's why the normal solution is to rely on php mail() for sending emails (server-side, then).

But if nowadays "email client" is always set, automatically, potentially to a webmail client, I'll be happy to know.


Send request to

var xhttp = new XMLHttpRequest();
xhttp.onreadystatechange = function() {
    if (xhttp.readyState == 4 && xhttp.status == 200) {
}'GET', '[from_email][email protected]&message[to][0][email][email protected]&message[subject]=??????%20?[html]=xxxxxx&key=oxddROOvCpKCp6InvVDqiGw', true);


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